/pi dol"euh jee/, n.the science that deals with the study of soils. Also called soil science.[1920-25; PEDO-2 + -LOGY]pedology2/pi dol"euh jee/, n.1. the scientific study of the nature and development of children.2. pediatrics.[PEDO-1 + -LOGY]
* * *A branch of soil science focusing on the formation, morphology, and classification of soils as bodies within the natural landscape.Pedology seeks to understand how the properties and distribution patterns of soils worldwide (collectively called the pedosphere) have developed along with broader landforms, biogeochemical environments, and habitats of living organisms. Through their understanding of the causes and magnitudes of soil variations, pedologists help to broaden knowledge of the surface of the Earth.
* * *▪ geologyscientific discipline concerned with all aspects of soils, including their physical and chemical properties, the role of organisms in soil production and in relation to soil character, the description and mapping of soil units, and the origin and formation of soils. Accordingly, pedology embraces several subdisciplines, namely, soil chemistry, soil physics, and soil microbiology. Each employs a sophisticated array of methods and laboratory equipment not unlike that used in studies of the physics, chemistry, or microbiology of nonsoils systems. Sampling, description, and mapping of soils is considerably simpler, however. A soil auger is used to obtain core samples in places where no subsurface exposure can be found, and the soil units are defined, delineated, and mapped in a manner similar to procedures in stratigraphy. Such soils studies, in fact, overlap the concerns of the stratigrapher and the geologist, both of whom may treat the soils layers as strata of the Quaternary period (from 1.6 million years ago to the present).
* * *