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What is a soil component?

As you know, each map unit represents an area dominated by one to three kinds of soil (when using SSURGO data). These different kinds of soil are termed components. Components are each separate individual soils with individual properties and are grouped together for simplicity's sake when characterizing the map unit.

In the map unit shown here there are three components. We have illustrated the point by representing the components. Remember that this cannot be shown on a soils map because the locations of the components are generalized away to form the map units. The main component, shown in red, occupies about 85% of the map unit. The second component, in orange, makes up about 10% and the third component covers about 5% of the map unit.