Contenders for State Soil
2005 is the 50th anniversary of the Australian Society of Soil Science Inc (ASSSI). To mark this occasion, the Victorian Branch of the ASSSI decided to increase awareness and appreciation of soils in Victoria by selecting a Victorian State Soil.
Other states in Australia will also be selecting their State Soil. Last year, the Red Chromosol was named the State Soil of New South Wales. In the United States, each state has selected a state soil, twenty of which have been legislatively established. The state soils in the U.S are represented by a soil series that has special significance to a particular state - and the state soils share the same level of distinction as official state flowers and birds. Further information on State Soils in USA can be found on the Stanford University website (external link).
Victoria already has several emblematic symbols representing the diversity and richness of the State's natural resources. The Common (Pink) Heath is probably the most well-known, and was proclaimed the state flower in 1958. In 1971, the Helmeted Honeyeater was declared the state bird and the Leadbeater's Possum the state animal. In 2002, the Weedy Seadragon was named the marine faunal emblem for Victoria. Declaring a State Soil for Victoria recognises the importance of soil as a vital resource to our State.
| To select the Victorian State Soil, the ASSSI Victorian Branch Committee nominated a shortlist of 11 soils. A short description of each of the contender soils is provided together with a link to a more detailed page for each of the soils that states a case for and against selection.This information was provided by various 'champions' for each soil from the Soil Science Society and aims to highlight the diversity of soils across the state as well as their environmental, agricultural, social and economic importance to Victoria.|
As a result of a public vote during November 2005, the Mottled Brown Sodosol was selected as the 'people's choice' for Victorian State Soil - followed by the Red Ferrosol and Red Sodosol in 2nd and 3rd position. These leading contenders finished well ahead of the remainder.