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Earth Science Chapter 10†
Weathering breaks down rocks
and erosion gets rid of soil.
Soil is important because it
holds water and prevents floods.† It
nourishes plants.† Itís a home to many
Farmers use topsoil.† Soil can come from the layer of rock at the
bottom, called bedrock.
Weathering is the breakdown of
rock into smaller and smaller pieces.
Mechanical weathering is the
breakdown of rock by physical means, such as by ice, wind, water, gravity,
plants, and animals.
When water seeps into a crack
in a rock and freezes later, the expanding ice breaks the rock.
Wind and water can weather
rocks through abrasion, which is the action of surfaces grinding against each
Both plant roots and animals
dig into soil to cause erosion.
Chemical weathering breaks
rocks and minerals into new substances.†
This can be caused by water, acid precipitation, or air.
Oxidation is the reaction of an
element with oxygen to form an oxide.†
Rust is the most familiar result of oxidation.
Oxidation occurs more quickly
in warm, humid climates.† This means your
bike will rust faster in
Bedrock is the layer of rock
beneath the loose soil.
The top layer of soil is called
topsoil.† This layer has the most organic
nutrients which is good for plant growth.
Cover crops are planted between
harvests to reduce soil erosion and to replace nutrients into the soil.† Soybeans and clover are common for this.
Farmers plant different things, a practice called crop rotation, to keep