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How Does Soil Affect the pH of Water?

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Mai Gaafar

on 30 September 2014

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Transcript of How Does Soil Affect the pH of Water?


Did you know that soils can be alkaline, neutral, or acidic? Most plants grow best in soil near neutral pH, but some plants prefer slightly acidic and others slightly alkaline soil. What is the pH of the soil in your garden? What happens to the pH of water that comes in contact with soil? In this science project you will get to find out.
Research
When soil and water meet, their acidity levels interact and combine to influence both. Ultimately, the water drains away and the soil assumes a slightly different acidic content. The acidity of the soil is very important, since how acidic or alkaline a soil is governs what kind of plants can grow there and how easily roots can extract the necessary nutrients to survive. In both water and soil, acidity is measured according to the pH scale, a negative logarithmic scale where values increase times ten per whole digit increase or decrease. The middle of the scale is 7, where the pH level is neutral (like pure water). Higher pH levels indicate alkalinity and lower levels indicate acidity.

The pH level is naturally changed by encounters with other materials. In the encounters between water and soil, soil is generally the most changed of the two, while water tends to stay the same or be purified by its encounter, moving closer to a neutral pH level.



Read more : http://www.ehow.com/how-does_5610824_soil-affect-ph-water_.html
Hypothesis
If the soil go into the ground than that will affect the pH of the water.
Materials
Background research


What does Equation 1 mean? It means that for each 1-unit increase in pH, the concentration of hydrogen ions (H+) decreases ten-fold. For example, something that has a pH of 6 has ten times as many hydrogen ions as something with a pH of 7, and 100 times as many hydrogen ions as something with a pH of 8, and so on. Pure water has a neutral pH of 7. pH values lower than 7 are acidic, and pH values higher than 7 are alkaline (basic). Table 1 below has examples of substances with different pH values. As mentioned earlier, the pH of a soil affects what plants can grow there. This is just one way in which the geosphere interacts with the biosphere, which includes plants and all other life on Earth. Specifically, most plants prefer soil that is near neutral pH. There are particular varieties (strawberries, azaleas and rhododendrons, for example) that prefer acidic soil. Soil pH also influences how readily available many soil nutrients are to plants. The geosphere and biosphere are constantly interacting with each other, and with the hydrosphere, which includes all waters on Earth, such as in lakes, oceans, and the clouds.

In this geology science project, you will measure pH values of different types of soils, and you will see how the soil affects the pH of water that comes in contact with it.
Conclusion
When soil and water meet, their acidity levels interact and combine to influence both. Ultimately, the water drains away and the soil assumes a slightly different acidic content. The acidity of the soil is very important, since how acidic or alkaline a soil is governs what kind of plants can grow there and how easily roots can extract the necessary nutrients to survive. In both water and soil, acidity is measured according to the pH scale, a negative logarithmic scale where values increase times ten per whole digit increase or decrease. The middle of the scale is 7, where the pH level is neutral (like pure water). Higher pH levels indicate alkalinity and lower levels indicate acidity.

The pH level is naturally changed by encounters with other materials. In the encounters between water and soil, soil is generally the most changed of the two, while water tends to stay the same or be purified by its encounter, moving closer to a neutral pH level.
Sources
Decelles, P. (2002). The pH Scale. The Virtually Biology Course. Johnson County Community College. Retrieved February 1, 2013, from http://staff.jccc.net/pdecell/chemistry/phscale.html

United Stated Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). (n.d.). pH Scale. Acid Rain Students Site. Retrieved February 1, 2013, from http://www.epa.gov/acidrain/education/site_students/phscale.html

United States Department of Agriculture. (n.d.). Agricultural Ideas for Science Fair Projects. Sci4Kids: Science, Agriculture, and You. Agricultural Research Service. Retrieved February 1, 2013, from http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/kids/fair/ideas.htm
How Does Soil Affect the pH of Water?
Abstract
Questions
What value of pH is neutral? What ranges are acidic and basic?
How do scientists identify different soil types?
Places to gather different types of soil (3)
Small shovel or trowel for gathering soil samples
Ruler, metric
Sediment tubes with lids, 25 cm tall and 5 cm in diameter (9)
Small deli containers, like the kind sour cream or cottage cheese come in, also work.
Permanent marker
Small containers or cups, at least 3-oz. (3). They need not be identical.
Tap water
pH paper, with resolution of at least ±0.3 pH units and a range from 3 to 8 or a pH meter for liquids
You may need more than one set of pH paper to cover this range of pH values at ±0.3 pH unit resolution. See Table 2 in the Acids, Bases, & the pH Scale for more help.
Soil pH meter, with a pH range of at least 3.5 to 9 and a resolution of ±0.1 pH units
Facial tissues or cotton balls (10)
Clock, timer, or stopwatch
Duct tape
Coffee filters (18)
Lab notebook
Full transcript