Lecture M W 9:30-10:25 am
Course Objectives Hyperlink

Required Reading Resources Hyperlink

Course Grade Formula Hyperlink

Graduate (FOR545) Requirements Hyperlink

Attendance and engagement in class and in lab (MANDATORY) serve as the on-ramp of the FOR345/545 highway.
The final exam serves as the exit ramp.


Course Logistics

The first field lab, which occurs during the first week of classes, is unique.
Each student submits an individual lab report- refer to the lab manual for details.
Ergo, you must have the lab manual BEFORE the first lab.

Every FIELD LAB following the first lab will be done in teams assigned by the lab instructors.
This insures that each team is comprised students from different majors.
Each TEAM will submit a group lab report.
Each team member must fully engage in the entire process - from the initial field work to the final writing, editing and submission of the final report.
A single field lab report is submitted for each lab group (2-3 students).

FIELD LABS - getting there is half the fun
The bus DEPARTS from the ESF field trip loading area, located outside of Physical Plant Maintenance building on Stadium Place (near the bottom of stairs from Baker Lab to the Standart Street parking lot).

Busses for Mon, Wed and Fri labs depart at 12:45 pm;
Busses forTu and Th labs depart at 12:30pm

If you are not on the bus at that time, you cannot depart (i.e., you miss lab).
If you miss lab, you cannot contribute fully the the final report (major loss of credit).
If you forsee a scheduling problem, it may be possible to attend another section during the same week. This requires permission from Dr. Briggs and must be arranged in advance. In case of extraordinary circumstances (medical, other disaster) contact Dr. Briggs ASAP.

Bench labs are conducted in 102 Walters. Bench labs will be carried out in a 'teaIm' of 2-3.
Unlike field labs, each student will submit an individual lab report.
Note that for bench labs, there is in fact an I in 'teaIm'

Fall 2021 Lab Due Dates, Exam Schedule

Week Of: Lecture Topics & Reading Assignments Lab Topics
Aug. 30 - Sep. 3
Week 1
Course Introduction
Soil at two scales: local and global
The Critical Zone
Geology as a precursor

Text 1.1-1.8; 20.5 - 20.8
What is soil ? -- A modern look

Extensions of Tragedy of the Commons
Lab 1 Field Lab - Geology of the Tully Valley (Geologic foundation of soil - parent material)

View glacial meltwater flow
Required Reading: The hydrogeology of the Tully Valley, Onondaga County, New York-An overview of research, 1992-2012:

Older - individual component fact sheets below (partial titles listed) are also helpful
History of Landslides
Landslide Hazards
Remediation of Mudboils
Tree Rings Record

Bill Kappel recorded on video mudboil changes from 2011 to 2015

Sep. 6 - 10
Week 2
Soil Profile Description
Influence of land use on soil morphology
Text 1.9 - 1.20
Soil Drainage Class Key
Lab 2 Navigating FOR345/545 Cyberspace

This virtual tour of the course web page maps out the entire semester for you.
Sep. 13 - 17
Week 3

Parent Material
(It's in the jeans!)
Text 2.1
Site Classification Field Guide
by R.D. Briggs (1994)

Guide to Describing Soils. Prose used by the pros. This has a LOT of information. It is for reference.

Lab 3 - Field Lab - Lacustrine parent material: soil morphology

Download OSDs for Croghan, Lamson, Niagara, and Otisville series.

3-Rivers WMA Brochure

Get your own soil map from Web Soil Survey

Video -identifying soil horizons.
Sep. 20 - 24
Week 4
Soil Formation
Weathering Spectacular Features (Morton 2020)

Text 2.2-2.10

Redoxymorphic features - vary by temperature, parent material, and saturation conditions
State of the art from 2019 Soil Science Society of America annual meeting check it out
Lab 4a - Field Lab - Glacial till parent material I: Soil morphology
Heiberg Forest - Morphology of a Glacial Till Catena. Download OSDs for Mongaup, Willdin, Ontusia, Norchip series.
Get Site Classification Field Guide
Hagerstown series Picture
Hagerstown series Description
Sep. 27 - Oct. 1
Week 5
Soil Physical Properties I
Text Chapter 4
Soil Health and Structure Video
Lab 4b Field Lab - Glacial till parent material II: Landscape
Oct. 4 - 8
Week 6
Soil Physical Properties II
Field Indicator for Hydric Soil Indicators
- NOT REQUIRED but you can click here
Lab 5 Soil physical properties
Oct. 11 - 15
Week 7
Soil Water Concepts
Text 5.1 - 5.4
Lab 4 (cont.) Group work to complete soil morphology and landscape distribution report.

NYS Erosion & Sediment Blue Book Click Here

Minnesota DNR BMP Treasure Chest Click here
Oct. 18 - 22
Week 8
Soil Water Movement
Text 5.5 - 5.11
Field Lab 6 Soil erosion and BMPs

NYS BMP Manual 2018 Version
Oct. 25 - 29
Week 9
Soil Water Completed Field Lab 7 Organic soils
FAO Organic Soil Website
Nov. 1 - 5
Week 10
Soil Aeration, Soil Temperature

Text Chapter 7

Wetlands via US EPA
Lab 8 Soil Water
Nov. 8 - 12
Week 11
Soil Colloids and CEC
Text Chapter 8
No Lab This Week
Nov. 15 - 19
Week 12

Soil Colloids Completion, Soil Acidity
Text Chapter 9
Lab 9 - Colloids and CEC
Nov. 22 - 26
Week 13

Nov. 29 - Dec. 3
Week 14
Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition
Lab 10 Soil acidity
Dec. 6 - 10
Week 15
Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition
Lab 11 optional Soil Fertility

Christmas Tree Fertilization Worksheet
Dec. XX FINAL EXAM Scheduled by Registrar
email: rdbriggs@esf.edu
Updated on July 20, 2021
SUNY Environmental Science and Forestry