Word of the Day – Tuesday, March 19th



Word of the Day


Clever Clue of the Month

The Cruciverbalist


Daily Email


A silty windblown soil deposit
Common clues: Fertile loam;
Rich soil deposit; Windblown soil; Loamy soil deposit; Silt deposit
Crossword puzzle frequency: once a year
Frequency in English language: 56856 / 86800
The Soil Underworld

Loess landscape near Hunyuan, Shanxi province, China

Among the classifications of soil types, loess is a fine, silty, windblown (eolian) type of unconsolidated deposit. (The term sometimes refers to the soil derived from it.) It is derived from glacial deposits, where glacial activity has ground rocks very fine (rock flour). After drying, these deposits are highly susceptible to wind erosion, and downwind deposits may become very deep, even a hundred metres or more, as in areas of China and the midwestern United States. Loess deposits are geologically unstable by nature, and will erode very readily; even well-managed loess farmland can experience dramatic erosion of well over 25 tonnes per hectare per year.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Loess"