WBBSE Solutions For Class 10 Geography Chapter 5 India-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India

Chapter 5 India-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India Long Answer Type Questions

Question 1. Discuss the various causes of soil erosion.
Answer:

The causes of soil erosion can be broadly classified into two types-

  1. Natural causes
  2. Manmades causes

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india causes of soil erosion

Read and Learn Also WBBSE Solutions for Class 10 Geography and Environment

1. Natural causes:

1. Landform: The rate of soil erosion is greater in hilly regions than on plains due to the slope. The soil is not very deep and mature on hills and plateaus. Hence, it is easily washed down by rainwater or slips along the slope by gravitational force.

2. Storm: Strong winds and storms may uproot big trees and make the soil loose and easily eroded. Also, open or exposed lands are prone to soil erosion by the action of wind.

3. Nature of rainfall: Rainfall is directly related to soil erosion. If rainfall occurs with small drops and a short period, the level of soil erosion is less. But if there is heavy rainfall with big drops for a long period of time, the level of soil erosion is greater. Open land is more prone to erosion by splashing of rainwater than land covered with vegetation.

4. Wind: In deserts and arid regions where there is no or very less vegetation, the wind causes erosion over huge areas.

5. Flowing water: In hilly regions, the rainwater from higher altitudes comes down along the slopes of hills in numerous thin streams. These streams cause erosion of the slopes as they flow down, e.g. gully erosion, rill erosion, ravine erosion, etc.

2. Man-made Causes:

1. Deforestation: Deforestation of land causes the soil to become loose and easily erodible. Thus, wind and rainwater cause soil erosion when the land is exposed after cutting down trees.

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india causes of deforestation

 

2. Unscientific methods of cultivation: Methods of shifting cultivation (e.g. Jhum) damage the soil and lead to high levels of erosion.

3. Overgrazing: Overgrazing of animals on the same fields remove the grass cover of the land. The soil is exposed to natural forces and becomes prone to erosion.

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india causes of overgrazing

 

4. Population: The increasing population is a cause of soil erosion, an increase in population leads to an increase in the construction of roads, railways, houses, drainage lines, deforestation, increased agricultural activities, etc. All these lead to soil erosion.

5. Unscientific mining: Unscientific mining activities may damage the topmost layer of soil and cause erosion. If the excavated mines are not filled up properly, the roofs may collapse and cause disasters. Thus, unscientific mining increases the level of soil erosion.

6. Conventional method of farming: Traditional systems of agriculture may also cause soil erosion. Excessive application of chemical fertilisers and pesticides, and the use of tractors and harvesters tend to loosen the soil. Over-irrigation also makes the soil saline and infertile.

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india causes of usages of chemical fertilizers in agriculture

 

7. Landslide: Unauthorised construction, unplanned agriculture and deforestation tend to loosen the soil of mountain slopes and cause landslides. Falling of stones, pebbles, rocks and boulders along the hill slopes causes heavy soil erosion.

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india soli erosion

 

Question 2. Discuss the effects of soil erosion in India.
Answer:

The effects of soil erosion in India are as follows—

1. Decrease in the underground water level and soil humidity: The topsoil is generally more porous and softer than the lower layers. It helps in the absorption of rainwater and percolation in order to recharge the groundwater.

If this layer is removed, the relatively harder and less porous layer is exposed, which allows less percolation of the water. Thus, the level of underground waterfalls and the soil tends to dry up.

2. Removal of fertile topsoil: The essential minerals present in the topsoil are removed due to erosion. This reduces the fertility of the soil and hence reduces its productivity.

3. Deposition of silt in rivers and canals: The eroded soil particles are washed away by surface runoff and are deposited in rivers, lakes, canals, ponds and other water bodies. This reduces the depth of the water bodies. It may also lead to a flood.

4. Spreading of deserts: In arid and desert regions, the wind is the active agent of soil erosion. The wind blows away the topsoil and the sand particles from desert regions and drops them elsewhere.

This covers fertile lands with sand particles. Thus, the fertility of the land is reduced and the desert is extended. E.g. The area of the Thar desert is increasing in this way.

5. Floods and droughts: The deposition of eroded soil in rivers, lakes and other water bodies reduces their depth and cause floods in the rainy season.

On the other hand, erosion of the fertile and fine textured topsoil exposes the granular lower layers, which have less water-holding capacities. The Spread of sand particles makes fertile lands infertile and unproductive, which may result in droughts.

6. Landslides: Deforestation or unscientific construction in hilly regions loosens the soil, which easily falls off along the slopes due to gravitational forces. Thus landslides occur frequently, which increase soil erosion.

7. Hindrance in economic and cultural development: Soil erosion hampers agricultural production and affects the economy. Life of people becomes more and more difficult in regions which are severely prone to erosion, e.g. deserts, hilly regions, and flood-prone regions.

The Spread of deserts and the reduction of the productivity of land hampers the cultural development of that place.

Question 3. Discuss the characteristics of the soils of India along with their distribution.
Answer:

The main types of soil found in India are—

  1. Alluvial soil
  2. Black or regur soil
  3. Red soil
  4. Laterite soil
  5. Desert soil
  6. Mountain soil.

The characteristics and distribution of the different types of soils in India are as follows—

Soil Distribution Characteristic features
1. Alluvial soil of river basins River basins and deltas of rivers Indus, Ganga, Brahmaputra, etc. 1. Alluvium is deposited when the river floods its basin areas.

2.  Presence of silt makes the soil very fertile.

3. The soil is rich in potash and calcium compounds.

4.  The soil is suitable for growing rice, wheat, jowar, bajra, pulses, oilseeds, cotton, sugarcane, jute and vegetables.

2. Alluvial soil of coastal regions Eastern and Western Coastal Plains, delta regions, Sundarban region of West Bengal. 1.  Formed mainly due to the deposition of oceanic silt.

2.  Presence of sand and salts make the soil moderately fertile.

3.  Suitable for growing coconut and betelnut.

4.  Mangrove forests grow in the saline soil of lowlands in deltas.

Black soil Deccan trap region of northwestern Deccan plateau, the plateau of Maharashtra, Bharuch, Vadodara, and Surat of Gujarat, Western Madhya Pradesh, northern Karnataka. 1.  Formed by weathering of basalt.

2. The soil is black in colour.

3. The soil has a high percentage of clay particles, hence water holding capacity is high.

4.  Suitable for growing cotton. Hence, also known as black cotton soil.

5. The soil is very fertile.

6. Other crops grown are—food grains, oilseeds, citrus fruits, vegetables, etc.

Red soil Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh of Deccan plateau, plateau of Maharashtra, Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand, hilly region north-eastern India, plateau of Meghalaya. 1. Formed by weathering of igneous and metamorphic rocks like granite and gneiss.

2.  Presence of ferric oxides in the soil makes it red in colour. 3. Water holding capacity low.

4.  Rich in potash and phosphate minerals.

5.  Suitable for growing ragi, rice, tobacco, groundnuts, potatoes, vegetables, etc.

Laterite soil Western Ghats, Nilgiri hills, hilly region of Odisha, Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand 1.  Rich is oxides of iron and aluminium.

2. The soil is reddish in colour and hard like brick.

3.  The soil lacks nitrogen, phosphoric acid, potash, lime and magnesium.

4. The soil is less fertile.

5. Crops like rice, sugarcane and ragi are grown with the help of irrigation.

Desert soil Desert region of Rajasthan, Kachchh and Kathiawar region of Gujarat. Characteristic features
1. The soil is sandy, rich in salts and lacks organic matter.2. The soil is rich in phosphates but lacks nitrogen.3. Crops grown (with the help of irrigation) are—jowar, bajra, wheat and cotton.
Mountain soil Western and eastern Himalayas, Western Ghats, Eastern Ghats, Cardamom hills. 1. The soil is not deep due to the steep slope of the mountainous regions and has a young immature profile.

2.  The soil lacks potash, phosphorus and lime, but is rich in organic matter.

3.  Podzol soil is found on the higher slopes of the mountains and chestnut soil is found on the lower slopes of the mountains.

4. Crops grown are—rubber, tea, coffee, spices, fruits, etc.

 

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india map

 

Question 4. How can soil erosion be recorded and soil be conserved?
Answer:

Prevention of erosion and conservation of soil is very important in order to retain the fertility and quality of the soil.

The steps that can be taken for the conservation of soil are as follows—

1. Afforestation: The roots of plants help to hold the soil tightly and the canopy of leaves overhead help to prevent the rainwater from splashing directly on the soil. These help to prevent soil erosion. Thus, barren and open lands must be afforested in order to conserve the soil.

2. Contour Farming: In hilly regions, agriculture can be done by the method of contour farming. This helps to break the slope of the land by cutting down the slopes into flattened stretches or steps so that the speed of running water can be reduced. This in turn helps to reduce soil erosion.

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india Countour farming

 

3. Gully Farming: In regions where gully erosion is predominant due to heavy rainfall, cultivation is done in narrow strips across the direction of the flow of water. This reduces the speed of flowing water as well as reduces the level of erosion.

4. Prevention of Jhum Cultivation: In jhum cultivation and other methods of shifting cultivation, forested land is cleared for agriculture. After three or four years, this land is discarded when fertility reduces and affects crop production.

Once again another stretch of forested land is cleared and cultivated in the same way. This process is very harmful for the environment as biomass is destroyed considerably and soil is exposed to erosion. Therefore soil can be conserved if jhum cultivation or other shifting cultivation is prevented.

5. Step Farming: The hill slopes are cut into steps or stairs for practising agriculture. The flat lands thus formed help in holding the running water. This helps in agriculture as well as reduces soil erosion.

 

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india step farming

 

6. Strip Farming: In hilly regions with steep slopes, agriculture can be practised in narrow strips of land across the direction of the slope. This helps to hold the soil tightly and reduces erosion. Erosion-preventive crops like pulses, soybean, nuts, etc. can be grown. The vegetative cover helps to hold the rainwater and increases the humidity of the soil.

Chapter 5 India-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India Short Explanatory Answer Type Questions

Question 1. What do you understand by ‘Khadar and Bahangar’?
Answer:

Khadar and Bahangar

Two types of alluvial soil are found in the Gangetic Plains of northern India. These are— khadar and bhangar.

1. Khadar:

  1. The new alluvial soil found on the banks of the rivers is called Khadar.
  2. Khadar is very fertile as the alluvium brought down by the rivers is renewed every year.
  3. The soil is loamy and porous.
  4. The soil is light brown in colour.

2. Bhangar:

  1. The old alluvial soil is known as a hangar.
  2. This lies higher up in the flood plains, on the river terraces at a distance from the rivers.
  3.  This soil is rich in calcium carbonate.
  4. The soil is clayey and non-porous.
  5. This soil is dark in colour and is less fertile than the new alluvium.

Question 2. Write a short note on laterite soil.
Answer:

Laterite soil

The word ‘laterite’ comes from the Latin word ‘later’, meaning ‘brick’.

Laterite soil regions in India: In India, laterite soil is found in the high temperature and heavy rainfall regions of the Western Ghats, Nilgiri hills and Cardamom hills of the Peninsular plateau, Hilly regions of Odisha, the Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand, etc.

Characteristic features:

  1. Due to heavy rainfall, the salts and other soluble minerals are washed down into the bottom layers from the surface of the soil.
  2. The soil texture is coarse with big air spaces in between. Hence, it has very less water holding capacity.
  3. This soil is less fertile and not very suitable for agriculture.
  4. The upper layers of laterite soil become very hard like bricks when dry.
  5. The soil is reddish or brownish in colour.

Question 3. Mention the characteristic features of black soil. OR, Where is black soil found in India? Discuss its characteristics. OR, Write a short note on the black soil of India.

Answer:

Black soil regions in India:

  1. Maximum availability of black soil is seen in the Deccan Trap region of Maharastra in the northwestern part of the Deccan plateau.
  2. Black soil is also found in Bharuch, Vadodara and Surat of Gujarat, western parts of Madhya Pradesh and northern parts of Karnataka.

Characteristic features:

  1. Black soil is formed by the weathering of basalt.
  2. This soil is also called Regur, derived from the Telegu word ‘Regada’.
  3. The soil is rich in iron oxides. The blackish colour comes from black crystalline schists and basic gneisses.
  4. The soil is fine textured with a high amount of clay and silt present in the soil.
  5. Although the soil is deficient in nitrogen, the calcium, potassium, lime, aluminium and magnesium carbonate present in the soil make it very fertile.
  6. The water-holding capacity of black soil is high.
  7. Cotton grows best in this soil. Thus, the soil is also known as black cotton soil.
  8. Other crops growing well in this soil are—sugarcane (Vidarbha, Marathwada), groundnuts (northern Karnataka), jowar, oranges (Nagpur), onion (Nasik), etc.

Question 4. What are the effects of regur soil on agriculture?
Answer:

The effects of regur soil on agriculture

The black soil is also known as ‘regur’, the term derived from the Telegu word ‘Regada’. The soil is formed due to weathering of basalt of the Deccan plateau region. The soil is rich in iron, lime, magnesium, potassium and aluminium,
which makes it very fertile. However, it is poor in phosphates, nitrogen and organic matter.

The high water holding capacity due to fine soil particles is another important factor for the high fertility of the soil. Cotton grows best in black soil. Hence, the soil is also known as black, cotton soil. Other crops grown in this soil are sugarcane, groundnuts, tobacco, onion, orange, etc. The black soil or regur soil regions are one of the best agricultural regions in India.

Question 5. Write a short note on the red soil region of India.
Answer:

The red soil region of India

Red soil regions in India: Red soil is found in India in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, the plateau region of Maharashtra, the Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand, hilly regions of northeastern India and the Meghalaya plateau.

Characteristic features:

  1. Red soil is formed from the weathering of igneous and metamorphic rocks like granite and gneiss.
  2. High amounts of ferric compounds make the soil appear red in colour.
  3. The water-holding capacity of red soil is very low
  4. The soil is rich in potash.
  5. The crops grown in this soil are— ragi, rice, tobacco, groundnuts, pulses and vegetables.

Question 6. Name three important soil regions of India.
Answer:

The three important soil regions of India, according to the level of fertility and productivity

 soil region Geographical area
1. Alluvial  The Indus-Ganga-Brahmaputra plains of northern India, the delta region of the Ganga, and the coastal regions on the eastern and western margins of India.
2. Black soil region Plateau region of Maharashtra, the south-eastern part of Gujarat, the southern part of Madhya Pradesh, the northern part of Karnataka, etc.
3. Red soil region The plateau regions of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, etc.

 

Question 7. What is the alluvial soil of the river basins known in different parts of India?
Answer:

Alluvial soil is known by different names in different parts of India. They are as follows—

Name of alluvial soil  Geographical location 
1. Bhangar Old alluvium deposits on the river terraces.
2. Khadar Newer alluvium deposits on the river banks.
3. Bet Sutlej plains in Punjab.
4. Bhabar Lies along the foothills of the Shiwalikhs formed due to the merging of alluvial fans.
5. Reh/Usar/ Kallar Saline and alkaline soils of the drier areas of Haryana.
6. Terai Lies to the south of the baby belt. Mostly found in the eastern parts than in the western parts.
7. Karewa Alluvial soil formed from deposits brought down by the glaciers in Kashmir valley.
8. Loess Found in Madhya Pradesh.

 

Question 8. Differentiate between red soil and laterite soil.
Answer:

The differences between red soil and laterite soil are as follows—

Point of difference Red soil     Laterite soil
Formation Formed due to weathering of old granite and gneiss rocks. Formed by the accumulation of oxides of iron and aluminium on the surface while the other soluble minerals get washed down to the lower layers during heavy rain.
Location Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, plateau regions of Maharashtra, Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand, hilly region of north-eastern India, plateau region of Meghalaya. Western Ghats, Nilgiri and Cardamom hills, hilly region of Odisha, Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand.
Crops grown Rice, wheat, jowar, bajra, etc. (with the help of irrigation) Maize, jowar, bajra, coffee, cashew nuts, etc.

 

Question 9. Differentiate between Khadar and bhangra soil.
Answer:

The differences between Khadar and bhangra soil are as follows—

Point of difference Khadar  Bangor 
 Location On the flood plains on either side of the river, lying close to the banks. On the river terraces on either side of the river a little far away from the banks.
Kankar deposits Calcareous concentrations or kankar are not found. Calcareous concentrations or kankar are found.
Fertility This is very fertile as alluvium deposits are renewed every year due to the flooding of river banks. This is less fertile as alluvium deposits are not renewed every year. Renewal of alluvium may occur only if the flood water spreads for a long distance from the river banks.

 

Question 10. Differentiate between alluvial soil.
Answer:

The differences between alluvial soil and black soil are as follows—

Point of difference  Alluvial soil Black soil
Formation  Formed by deposition of silt, sand, clay brought by rivers and organic materials.
Colour Varies from light brown to dark grey. Varies from black to dark brown.
Location  Found in the river valleys of India, especially along the middle and lower courses Found in the plateau region of Maharastra, parts of Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh, parts of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu
Crops grown  Rice, wheat, sugarcane, jute, etc Cotton, tobacco, Wheat etc.

 

Question 11. Where is jhum cultivation practised in India, and how?
Answer:

Jhum is a kind of shifting cultivation practised in India mostly by the tribal and native people. The areas where jhum cultivation can be seen in India are—the north-eastern states of India, especially in Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Tripura, Meghalaya and Nagaland.

Method of Jhum Cultivation: In jhum cultivation, first a portion of a forest on the hill slopes are chosen and burnt. The ash thus produced is mixed with soil and used as a fertiliser.

Then the seeds of various crops are sown in the soil. The soil can produce sufficient crops for three to four years, after which the fertility starts decreasing.

Hence, a new portion of the forest is chosen and burnt and cultivated in the same way. Jhum cultivation results in the massive destruction of forests and biomass and causes the destruction of ecosystems. This in turn results in environmental degradation.

Question 12. Mention the causes of soil erosion in India and their possible solutions.
Answer:

Soil erosion refers to the removal of the topmost layer of soil by various natural agents like wind, rainfall, rivers, etc. and man-made causes like deforestation, unscientific cultivation, overgrazing, etc.

Solution: Soil erosion can be prevented or controlled by the following actions—

  1. Afforestation or planting more trees.
  2. Prevention of shifting cultivation, e.g. Jhum.
  3. Controlled grazing of animals.
  4. Scientific and planned methods of agriculture.

Question 13. How do unscientific mining landslides and deforestation cause soil erosion?
Answer:

Unscientific Mining: Mineral resources and ores of various kinds are excavated from mines by unscientific methods. This leaves the land exposed and prone to erosion. It may also lead to landslides if the mines are not filled up properly after excavation.

Landslides: The sudden fall of rocks and soil along the slope or topography due to man-made or natural reasons are known as landslides. The main causes of landslides are the construction of roadways and railways in hilly regions, the construction of dams and reservoirs on rivers, unscientific cultivation along hill slopes, etc.

Heavy rainfall, earthquakes, and unscientific construction of buildings in hilly regions increase the frequency and intensity of landslides.

Deforestation: The roots of the trees help to hold the soil tightly and prevent erosion. Cutting down trees loosens this bond and the exposed soil becomes easily erodible by wind and surface runoff coming from rainfall.

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india causes of deforestation.

Question 14. Describe the regions facing problems of soil erosion in India.
Answer:

Soil erosion is a common problem faced in India.

The various regions of India facing soil erosion are—

  1. Himalayan region, Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats due to erosion by running water.
  2. Rajasthan and Gujarat due to wind.
  3. Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, parts of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh due to excessive grazing of animals on pastures.
  4. Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab due to excessive deforestation.
  5. Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Darjeeling, Sikkim and other hilly regions due to landslides.
  6. North-eastern states of India and parts of Odisha due to shifting cultivation.

Question 15. Discuss the role of afforestation, step farming and strip farming in the prevention of soil erosion.
Answer:

Afforestation: The roots of the trees help to hold the soil tightly and the canopy of leaves overhead prevents the rainwater from directly falling on the soil. Both of this help to prevent soil erosion. Hence, open lands must be covered with vegetation to prevent the top layer of soil from being removed fast.

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india affforestation

Step farming: The steep slope of the land in hilly regions increases the speed of soil erosion. If the slope is cut into steps or stairs, the general slope of the land can be reduced and flat stretches of land can be created along the hills. This helps to reduce the speed of running water, thus reducing soil erosion. Hence, step farming is an important method of preventing soil erosion.

Strip farming: Gullies are formed in regions where the soil is washed away by running water. Formation of gullies and washing away of soil can be reduced or prevented by planting fast-growing trees in strips across the direction of the flow of the running water. If the speed of the running water is reduced, its erosive capacity is also reduced.

Question 16. How does the grazing of animals cause soil erosion?
Answer:

While grazing, the animals tend to pull out the roots of the grass and the small plants that they eat. This loosens up the topsoil. Also, the bonding of the soil is lost by the continuous stepping of the animals with hooves on the ground. As a result, the top layer of soil is easily removed by running water.

The process of formation of ravines is called ravine erosion. Such ravines are found in Garhbeta in Medinipur, West Bengal.

Question 17. How does jhum cultivation cause soil erosion?
Answer:

In jhum cultivation, the forests are burnt, which removes the vegetative cover and exposes the soil. This exposed soil is prone to erosion by the splashing of rainwater. Thus, jhum cultivation leads to soil erosion.

Question 18. How does flowing water cause soil erosion?
Answer:

The different types of soil erosion caused by running water are—

1. Sheet erosion: When rainwater splashes on the open ground, loosens the soil particles and washes them away like a sheet from the top, it is called sheet erosion.

2. Rill erosion: In sloping lands, the surface runoff creates thin and shallow channels on the ground while flowing downwards. These thin channels are called rills and the method of removal of soil by the water running through these rills is called rill erosion.

3. Cully erosion: When rill erosion continues for many years, the narrow channels become wider and deeper. These come to be known as gullies and the method of erosion is called gully erosion.

4. Ravine erosion: The rills and gullies that have very steep sides are known as ravines The process of formation of ravines is called ravine erosion. Such ravines are found in Garhbeta in Medinipur, West Bengal.

WBBSE Solutions Class 10 geography and environment chapter Chapter 5 India Physical Environment soil in india soil erosion caused by flowing water

Question 19. How does landform or topography influence soil erosion?
Answer:

Soil erosion is higher in hilly regions and plateaus compared to plain lands. In plateaus and hills, the soil is not thick and deep due to the slope. Thus, they are easily washed away by rainwater. The slope of the land speeds up the process of erosion, and the gravitational force enhances it.

Question 20. How does an increase in population influence soil erosion?
Answer:

An increase in population leads to more construction of roadways, railways, houses, drainage systems, etc. All these lead to the cutting down of natural vegetation and exposure of soil. Thus, an increase in population leads to soil erosion.

Question 21. What is contour ploughing?
Answer:

Contour ploughing

A contour is an imaginary line that joins all places having the same height above mean sea level. In hilly regions, if the land is flattened by cutting down the slope into steps or stretches and cultivation is carried out on these steps along the contours, the method of cultivation is known as contour ploughing. This method of cultivation reduces soil erosion by reducing the speed of running water.

Question 22. How does the traditional method agriculture cause of soil erosion?
Answer:

In the traditional methods of agriculture, chemical fertilisers and pesticides are used to make the soil fertile, without even judging the requirement of a particular component.

Tractors and harvesters which are used in traditional methods tend to loosen the soil and cause erosion. An increase in soil erosion results in the destruction of soil fertility. Thus, the traditional method of agriculture causes soil erosion.

Question 23. Differentiate between step farming and stip farming.
Answer:

The differences between step farming and strip farming are—

Point of difference  Step forming Strip forming
Concept Cultivation of crops on steps or stairs cut along the slope of the hills. Cultivation of crops in narrow strips of land across the direction of the slope.
Type of Land The slope of the mountain is cut into a series of steps in order to reduce the slope and control soil erosion. Crops are grown on each step. Agriculture is practised in strips of land on the hills across the direction of the slope in order to check soil erosion and landslide.
Crops grown Here erosion resistant crops are not required to be grown. Crops like rice, wheat, maize, etc. are grown. Here erosion resistant crops are required to be grown, e.g. groundnuts, soybean, etc.

Chapter 5 India-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India

Short Answer Type Questions

Question 1. What is soil?
Answer:

Soil:

Soil is the thin layer present on the surface of the earth composed of disintegrated rocks and decayed organic matter. It sustains the vegetation cover and stores groundwater for the use of both plants and humans.

The minerals present in the parent rocks, the texture of the grains, the structure of the soil, the porosity and the humus content decide the level of fertility of the soil. E.g. Alluvial soil, laterite soil, red soil, etc.

Question 2. Name the major types of soils found in India.
Answer:

Different types of soils are found in different parts of India due to differences in the type of parent rocks, topography vegetative cover and climatic conditions.

The major types of soils found in India are—

  1. Alluvial soil
  2. Black or Regur soil
  3. Red soil
  4. Laterite soil
  5. Desert soil
  6. Mountain soil.

Question 3. Which soils of India are important for agriculture?
Answer:

Agriculture is dependent on the type of soil found in a region.

The soils that are the most suited for agriculture in India are—

  1. Alluvial soil
  2. Black or regur soil
  3. Red soil.

Question 4. Classify alluvial soil according to texture.
Answer:

Alluvial soil can be classified into three types according to the ratio of silt, sand and clay present in the soil.

They are—

  1. Sandy soil (percentage of sand is high)
  2. Loamy soil (percentage of sand, silt and clay is almost equal)
  3. Clayey soil (percentage of clay is high).

Question 5. Name some crops grown in alluvial soil.
Answer:

Some crops grown in alluvial soil are—rice, wheat, jute, cotton, sugarcane, etc.

Question 6. What is podzol soil?
Answer:

Podzol soil

The acidic soil rich in humus, found in the coniferous forest regions on the mountain slopes is known as podzol soil. Example—In India, podzol soil is found in the mountainous region of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir, where coniferous forests have grown.

Question 7. Name some regions where black soil is found in India.
Answer:

In India, black soil is found in the plateau regions of Maharashtra, Bharuch, Vadodara and Surat in Gujarat, the western region of Madhya Pradesh, and the northern region of Karnataka.

Question 8. In which regions of India saline soil is found?
Answer:

In India, saline soil is found in the coastal regions. Example—Sundarbans. It is also found in the arid and semi-arid regions of Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.

Question 9. Where is laterite soil found in India?
Answer:

Laterite soil is found in India in the Western Ghats, Nilgiri hills and Cardamom hills of the Deccan plateau, hilly region of Odisha and Chotanagpur plateau.

Question 10. What are ‘Bhur’ and ‘Regur’?
Answer:

‘Bhur’ and ‘Regur’

‘Bhur’: Bhur is the slightly undulating highlands made up of very fine soil, lying in the upper doab region of the Ganga plains in western Uttar Pradesh. These plains are less fertile.

‘Regur’: The black-coloured soil formed due to the weathering of basalt rocks in the Deccan plateau region is called regur. The term regur comes from the Telegu word ‘Regada’. This is very fertile soil and best suited for the cultivation of cotton.

Question 11. What is ‘Khadar’?
Answer:

Khadar

The new alluvial soil found in the flood plains of the Ganga in northern India, is known as ‘Khadar’. The fertility of khadar is more than bhangra as the soil is replenished by the layer of fresh deposits of alluvium every year.

Question 12. Why has black soil been formed in the Deccan Trap region?
Answer:

The Deccan Trap is a region in the northwestern part of the Deccan plateau formed of lava deposits. The rocks found in this region are of volcanic origin. E.g.—Basalt. The black soil has formed due to the weathering of this basalt.

Question 13. Why is alluvial soil very fertile?
Answer:

The alluvial soil is rich in plant nutrients such as potash and potassium. The ratio of sand, clay and loam present in the soil is almost equal. All these factors make the soil very fertile and most suited for agriculture.

Question 14. Why does the regur soil appear black in colour?
Answer:

Regur soil is formed from the weathering of the basalt that makes up the surface of the Deccan plateau region. The black colour of the parent rock makes the regur soil black in colour. The black colour is also due to the presence of black crystalline schists and black gneisses.

Question 15. Why does the laterite soil appear red in colour?
Answer:

In regions receiving heavy rainfall, the soluble minerals present in the soil, e.g.— potassium, calcium and magnesium are washed downwards from the surface into the lower layers by rainwater.

The iron and aluminium oxides remain in the upper layers of the soil. Thus, laterite soil present in these regions appears red in colour.

Question 16. Why is black soil or regur soil of India so fertile?
Answer:

Although the black soil or regur soil lacks nitrogen, phosphate and organic matter, it is rich in calcium, lime, magnesium, potassium, etc.

Besides this, it is also rich in clay and silt particles, which increases its water-holding capacity. Thus, all these factors make the black soil or regur soil of India very fertile.

Question 17. Why is the laterite soil called so?
Answer:

The word ‘laterite’ comes from the Latin word ‘later’ meaning brick. As the soil appears to be reddish like the colour of a brick, it is called laterite soil.

Question 18. Name some crops grown in black soil.
Answer:

Some crops grown in black soil are—cotton, groundnut, wheat, onion, oilseeds, tobacco, etc.

Question 19. Name some crops grown in red soil.
Answer:

Some crops grown in this soil are—maize, soya bean, groundnuts, coffee, millet, grapes, etc.

Question 20. Mention two characteristics of soil found in the coastal areas.
Answer:

The two characteristics of the soil found in coastal areas are—

  1. The soil found in coastal regions is saline due to the influence of the sea.
  2. The presence of sand particles in coastal soils is high. But in regions where the rivers meet the sea, the soil is more clayey than sandy.

Question 21. Which crops grow well in mountain soil?
Answer:

Mountain soil is suitable for various plantation crops. The crops grown in this soil are—tea, coffee, spices, wheat, barley, etc. Fruits like apples, oranges, cherries and different kinds of berries are grown in orchards in mountainous regions.

Question 22. Name some crops grown in desert soil.
Answer:

Desert soil is very dry and not suitable for agriculture. If irrigation facilities are provided, some crops like cotton, wheat, barley, pulses and millets can be grown in desert soil.

Question 23. Mention some methods of reducing or controlling soil erosion.
Answer:

The methods by which soil erosion can be reduced or controlled are—

  1. Planting trees or afforestation.
  2. Scientific methods of agriculture.
  3. Prevention of jhum and other methods of shifting cultivation.
  4. Controlled grazing of animals.
  5. Contour farming and step farming along the mountain slopes in hilly regions.
  6. Covering open lands with vegetation covers.
  7. Crop rotation, etc.

Question 24. What are the various causes of soil erosion?
Answer:

The various causes of soil erosion are—

Natural causes:

  1. Storms and strong winds
  2. Rainfall,
  3. Rivers, etc.

Man-made causes:

  1. Deforestation,
  2. Unscientific agricultural practices,
  3. Overgrazing of animals, etc.

Question 25. What do you understand by soil erosion?
Answer:

Soil erosion

The removal of the topmost layer of soil by natural forces (e.g., wind, river, rainfall, etc.) or man-made causes (e.g., deforestation, unscientific agriculture, overgrazing, etc.) is known as soil erosion. Erosion of the top layer of soil reduces the fertility of the soil considerably.

Question 26. Which regions of India are prone to soil erosion?
Answer:

The regions of India that are prone to soil erosion are—Meghalaya, Nagaland and Manipur of north-eastern India, Chotanagpur plateau of Jharkhand, Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats, the desert in Rajasthan, parts of Punjab, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, etc.

Chapter 5 India Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India Multiple Choice Type Questions

Write The Correct Answer From The Given Alternatives

Question 1. The old alluvium soil of the Northern Plains of India is called—

  1. Bhangar
  2. Khadar
  3. Terai
  4. Bhur

Answer: 1. Bhangar

Question 2. The most important soil for agriculture in India is—

  1. Alluvial soil
  2. Red soil
  3. Black soil
  4. Sandy soil

Answer: 1. Alluvial soil

Question 3. ‘Bhur’ is found in—

  1. Desert
  2. Plateau
  3. Gangetic Plains
  4. Deccan region

Answer: 3. Gangetic Plains

Question 4. Laterite soil is found in—

  1. Desert of Rajasthan
  2. Chotanagpur plateau
  3. Gangetic Plains
  4. Himalayan mountains

Answer: Chotanagpur plateau

Question 5. Podzol soil is found in—

  1. Coniferous forest region
  2. Plateau region
  3. Plains
  4. Desert regions

Answer: Coniferous forest region

Question 6. Weathering of granite and gneiss give rise to—

  1. Laterite soil
  2. Black soil
  3. Red soil
  4. Alluvial soil

Answer: 3. Red soil

Question 7. Soil is found at the mouth of the rivers—

  1. Alluvial soil
  2. Mountain soil
  3. Saline alluvial soil
  4. Red soil

Answer: 3. Saline alluvial soil

Question 8. Meghalaya plateau is mostly composed of—

  1. Laterite soil
  2. Alluvial soil
  3. Desert soil
  4. Black soil

Answer: 1. Laterite soil

Question 9. The new alluvial soil of the Gangetic plains is known as—

  1. Bhabar
  2. Khadar
  3. Terai
  4. Bhangar

Answer: Bhangar

Question 10. The water holding capacity of black soil is—

  1. Very high
  2. Very low
  3. Medium
  4. Low

Answer: 1. Very high

Question 11. The soil mixed with sand, pebbles, gravel and silt found in the foothill regions of the Himalayas is called—

  1. Bhangar
  2. Khadar
  3. Terai
  4. Bhabar

Answer: Bhangar

Question 12. Sandy soil is good for cultivating—

  1. Cucumber
  2. Rice
  3. Wheat
  4. Tea

Answer: 1. Cucumber

Question 13. Water holding capacity of laterite soil is less because it is—

  1. Sandy
  2. Gravelly
  3. Clayey
  4. Highly porous

Answer: 2. Gravelly

Question 14. Mountain soil is—

  1. Acidic
  2. Alkaline
  3. Saline
  4. Highly alkaline

Answer: 1. Acidic

Question 15. The soil found in the desert region of Rajasthan is called—

  1. Alluvial soil
  2. Red soil
  3. Desert soil
  4. Laterite soil

Answer: 3. Desert soil

Question 16. The desert soil is—

  1. Alkaline
  2. Acidic
  3. Neutral pH
  4. None of these

Answer: 1. Alkaline

Question 17. In West Bengal, laterite soil is found in the district of—

  1. Darjeeling
  2. Nadia
  3. Purulia
  4. Howrah

Answer: 3. Purulia

Question 18. Desert soil is good for growing—

  1. Millets
  2. Rice
  3. Wheat
  4. Oilseeds

Answer: 1. Millets

Question 19. The soil research centre of India is located in—

  1. Kolkata
  2. Jaipur
  3. Kochi
  4. Dehradun

Answer: 2. Jaipur

Question 20. The main cause of gully erosion is—

  1. Surface runoff
  2. Wind
  3. Ocean currents
  4. Agriculture

Answer: 1. Surface runoff

Question 21. A man-made cause of soil erosion in India is—

  1. Weathering
  2. Erosion by surface runoff
  3. Unscientific agricultural practices
  4. Wind

Answer: 3. Unscientific agricultural practices

Question 22. The practice of agriculture in hilly regions by cutting the slopes into thin stretches of flat land is called—

  1. Gully cultivation
  2. Strip cultivation
  3. Afforestation
  4. Step cultivation

Answer: 3. Afforestation

Question 23. Soil conservation in hilly regions can be done by the process of—

  1. Planting trees
  2. Step cultivation
  3. Constructing roads
  4. Constructing dams across rivers

Answer: 2. Step cultivation

Question 24. The method of soil erosion by layers due to surface runoff created by rainfall is called—

  1. Rill erosion
  2. Valley erosion
  3. Gully erosion
  4. Sheet erosion

Answer: 4. Sheet erosion

Question 25. Soil erosion increases due to—

  1. Shifting cultivation
  2. Step cultivation
  3. Contour farming
  4. Strip farming

Answer: 1. Shifting cultivation

Question 26. The laterite soil is found in the region of—

  1. Ganga plain
  2. The western slope of western ghat
  3. Sundarban
  4. Desert region

Answer: 2. Western slope of western ghat

 

Chapter 5 India Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India If The Statement Is True

Write True And If False Write False Against The Following

Question 1. The new soil of the river valleys is called regur.
Answer: False

Question 2. Cotton grows best in laterite soil.
Answer: False

Question 3. The presence of ferric oxide makes the soil red in colour.
Answer: True

Question 4. Desert and semi-desert regions have sandy soil.
Answer: True

Question 5. Red soil is commonly found in the Thar desert.
Answer: False

Question 6. Laterite soil is reddish or brownish in colour.
Answer: True

Question 7. Desert soil is acidic in nature.
Answer: False

Question 8. Laterite soil is found in the Gangetic Plains.
Answer: False

Question 9. Cotton is grown in saline soil.
Answer: False

Question 10. Desert soil is also known as podzol soil.
Answer: False

Question 11. Mountain soil comprises very thin layers.
Answer: True

Question 12. Black soil needs a lot of fertilisers for agriculture.
Answer: False

Question 13. The red soil has a low water-holding capacity.
Answer: True

Question 14. Black soil contains high percentages of silt and clay.
Answer: True

Question 15. The laterite soil becomes very hard when dry.
Answer: True

Question 16. ‘JhunV is a type of shifting cultivation.
Answer: True

Question 17. Soil erosion can be prevented by afforestation.
Answer: True

Question 18. Jhum cultivation helps to increase soil fertility.
Answer: False

Question 19. Gullies are created in lateritic soil regions due to sheet erosion.
Answer: False

Question 20. The wind is an agent of soil erosion.
Answer: True

Question 21. Soil erosion occurs at the same level all over India.
Answer: False

Question 22. Excessive irrigation makes soil saline.
Answer: True

Question 23. Crop rotation does not help in increasing soil fertility.
Answer: False

Question 24. Step cultivation helps to reduce soil erosion in hilly regions.
Answer: True

Question 25. Strip cultivation increases soil erosion.
Answer: False

Chapter 5 Indian-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India Fill In The Blanks With Suitable Words

Question 1. ______soil is found in the Northern Plains of India.
Answer: Alluvial

Question 2. Desert soil lacks ______ content.
Answer: Humus

Question 3. ______ soil is famous for cotton cultivation.
Answer: Black/regur

Question 4. The new alluvial soil of northern India is called ______
Answer: khadar

Question 5. The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) classifies Indian soil into ______ types.
Answer: Eight

Question 6. ______ crops are grown in desert soil.
Answer: Millet

Question 7. Mountain soil is ______ in colour.
Answer: Grey

Question 8. Bhangar soil has high concentrations of calcium carbonate (lime) called ______
Answer: Kankar

Question 9. The soil of coastal regions is ______ in nature.
Answer: Sailine

Question 10. Alluvial soil is ______ in humus and nitrogen.
Answer: Deficient

Question 11. Black soil is formed due to weathering of ______
Answer: Basalt

Question 12. Weathering of granite and gneiss rocks forms ______ soil.
Answer: Red

Question 13. The red soil appears red due to the presence of ______
Answer: Ferric oxide

Question 14. Laterite soil is rich in iron and ______
Answer: Aluminum oxide

Question 15. ______ soil is found in the Bankura and Birbhum districts of West Bengal.
Answer: Red

Question 16. Desert soil has a very low water-holding ______ capacity as it is highly
Answer: Porous

Question 17. Mountain soil is rich in ______
Answer: Humus

Question 18. The Deccan plateau is covered with ______ soil.
Answer: Black/Regular

Question 19. The soil of the Sundarban region is ______ in nature.
Answer: Saline

Question 20. The soils of mountain regions are ______ than the soils of plains.
Answer: Immature

Question 21. Soil erosion not only refers to the removal of the top layer of soil but also the decrease of______
Answer: Fertility

Question 22. Rill erosion is a form of______ erosion.
Answer: Gully

Question 23. One of the man-made causes of soil erosion is ______
Answer: Deforestation

Question 24. Jhum cultivation is practised in the hilly region of______ India.
Answer: Northeastern

Chapter 5 Indian-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India

Answer In One Or Two Words

Question 1. Name two states of India where laterite soil is found.
Answer: Meghalaya, Assam.

Question 2. In which soil does tea grow well?
Answer: Mountain soil.

Question 3. Which soil is deficient in humus, but is rich in potash, iron, calcium, and aluminium?
Answer: Black soil or regur.

Question 4. Which soil contains the least amount of hummus?
Answer: Desert soil.

Question 5. Which soil is best suited for cultivating rice?
Answer: Alluvial soil.

Question 6. Name the source of the word ‘regur’.
Answer: Telegu word ‘Regada’.

Question 7. What is alluvial soil known as in Kashmir Valley?
Answer: Karewa.

Question 8. Which kind of soil has a pH value of less than 7?
Answer: Acidic soils.

Question 9. Which is the most fertile soil in India?
Answer: Alluvial soil.

Question 10. Which soil has an equal ratio of clay and sand?
Answer: Loamy soil.

Question 11. Which soil has high contents of sand?
Answer: Sandy soil.

Question12. Where is loess soil found in India?
Answer: Madhya Pradesh.

Question 13. Which soil becomes very hard when dry?
Answer: Laterite soil.

Question 14. What is the hard layer formed at the top of laterite soil called?
Answer: Duricrust.

Question 15. What are the deposits of new alluvium in the river basins of Punjab known as?
Answer: Bet.

Question 16. Which minerals are present in high amounts in pedalfer soils?
Answer: Aluminium and iron.

Question 17. What is the sandy soil of the desert region known as?
Answer: Sierozem.

Question 18. Which mineral is present in high amounts in the pedal soils?
Answer: Calcium carbonate.

Question 19. What is the main cause of soil erosion in Rajasthan?
Answer: Wind.

Question 20. How can soil be conserved in regions of gully erosion?
Answer: Cultivation or planting trees along the gullies.

Question 21. Name a method of cultivation practised in hilly regions to prevent soil erosion.
Answer: Contour farming.

Question 22. Where is Jhum cultivation seen in India?
Answer: North-eastern India.

Question 23. Mention two natural causes of soil erosion.
Answer: Wind and surface runoff (rainwater).

Question 24. Mention two man-made causes of soil erosion.
Answer: Deforestation and traditional or primitive methods of cultivation

Chapter 5 Indian-Physical Environment Topic 5 Soils In India

Match The Left Column With The Right Column

1.

Left Column Right Column
1.  Pedalfer A.  Chernozem
2.  Pedocal B.  Mountain soil
3.  Rendzina C.  Podzol
4. Slerozem D.  Black soil
5.  Regur  E. Desert soil

Answer: 1-C,2-A,3-B,4-E,5-D

2.

Left Column  Right Column
1.  Alluvial soil  A. Comes from basalt
2.  Black soil B. Good for agriculture
3.  Red soil C.  Comes from granite
4.  New alluvium D.  Kashmir valley
5.  Karewa E.  Khadar

Answer: 1-B,2-A,3-C,4e,5-D

3.

Left Column  Right Column
1.  Jhum cultivation  A. Preventing soil erosion
2.  Step cultivation B. North-east India
3. Desertification C.  Rainwater
4. Sheet erosion D. Mountain Slope
5.  Landslide E.  Increases slope erosion

Answer: 1-B,2-A,3-E,4-C,5-D

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