The knowledge of the properties, genesis and distribution of soils and their interactions with landscape, vegetation and the nutrient cycles of the ecosystem are the prerequisites for sustainable use of natural resources. Our collections are used in the teaching of agro-chemistry and soil and environmental sciences, as well in research. The collections of the Soil Museum at Department of Soil Science and Agrochemistry are intensively used in everyday teaching process for more than 600 students annually.
Study collections in soil museum
Besides obtaining a field soil survey, it is possible to study soils in vitro using soil monoliths taken from various localities with a representative profile. Currently 133 soil monoliths are exposed. The slide of each soil monolith contains, besides regular information, soil names based on alternative soil classification. The Estonian soil names are converted to systems the following: World Reference Base for Soil Resources (WRB), United States Department of Agriculture Soil Taxonomy (USDA) and Russian Soil Classification (RSC).
Archive of soil samples
Soil samples are air-dry, homogenized and sieved. Soil samples originate from the national soil monitoring programme; samples have also been taken in the course of long-term field experiments, and from permanent research areas and transects. Soil samples collected by Prof. Loit Reintam, Prof Raimo Kõlli and others researchesrs since the 1950s form the most valuable scientific section of the museum.
Soil maps at different scales (from 1:10,000 to global) and various other maps characterizing condititons of soil formation
Minerals and rocks
Study collections of minerals, soil parent materials and local basement sediments
Collections of fertilizers used in Estonian agriculture over time
Academic documents (dissertations, annual and final reports of projects, manuscripts of local importance, photos, etc)
Curator: Alar Astover;
Tel. ++372 731 3546;