Kōrero: Soil investigation

Land use map

The annotations on this view of the Cass area of Canterbury indicate land capability classes. The classes range from I (highly productive land) to VIII (steep land, suitable only for protection). The availability of such maps has encouraged better use of productive land and the protection of erosion-prone areas.

The classes are based on a combination of factors, including rock and soil type, slope, erosion and vegetation cover. This is recorded on the map in shorthand, and looks like a large equation. Although the annotations seems complex, they are a good way to pack a lot of information onto the map.

Using this item

Landcare Research – Manaaki Whenua

© Copyright image. All rights reserved. Permission from Manaaki Whenua: Landcare Research New Zealand Limited must be obtained before the re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

Me pēnei te tohu i te whārangi:

P. J. Tonkin, 'Soil investigation - Changing role of soil science: 1986 onwards', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/mi/zoomify/14202/land-use-map (accessed 15 October 2019)

Story by P. J. Tonkin, published 24 Sep 2007