Florida State Soil: Myakka Fine Sand

On May 22, 1989, Governor Bob Martinez signed Senate bill number 524 into law, naming Myakka fine sand as the Official State Soil of Florida. The Florida Association of Professional Soil Classifiers (now the Florida Association of Environmental Soil Scientists), and the Florida Chapter of the Soil and Water Conservation Society worked together in the establishment of a state soil for the State of Florida. Soils within the Myakka series are classified in Soil Taxonomy as sandy, siliceous, hyperthermic Aeric Alaquods. These Spodosols are sandy soils with an organic-stained subsoil layer (spodic horizon) and occur on flatwoods landforms of the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Lowlands landscapes which is a part of the Southern Coastal Plain. Although Spodosols are extensive in the Southeastern and Northeastern United States, the Myakka soil series occurs only in the State of Florida. Myakka is an Aquod (wet, sandy Spodosols). The State of Florida has the largest total acreage of Aquods in the nation. The Myakka soils, along with the other Spodosols, are probably the most frequently photographed soils in Florida.

Watts and Yamataki. 1990. History of Establishing a State Soil: Florida’s Myakka Fine Sand. Soil Survey Horizons. 31:2 44-50.

File size = 2 mb (scan couresy of Watts).

FAESS-UF-USDA Myakka Field Day (May 17, 2011)
The event was fun and FAESS is excited to see the results. Tyler Jones (IFAS) has provided a gallery here.Tyler also has a draft video here (95mb).

Date: Tuesday 5/17/2011
Time: 8 am
Location: 1085 Pratt Blvd, Labelle, FL 33975-0248

FAESS and UF SWSD have spearheaded an effort to partner with the USDA/NRCS to excavate and document Myakka. The NRCS has graciously supplied considerable logistical support including site selectionand a number of personnel to describe and sample the soil. FAESS is coordinating with UF/IFAS to provide a professional photographer along with faculty expertise. FAESS is supplying the funds for the backhoe and together we will open a Myakka pit. The objective is to photograph the soil with modern digital equipment with the aim of creating some outstanding promotional material. Additionally, the soil will be described and characterized. As the time for this opportunity approaches, there will potentially be other activities (e.g. just heard that a GPR may be present). This will be an excellent opportunity to get together and spend some quality time with our state soil.

UF/IFAS photo by Tyler Jones