Soil and its types are mainly classified on the basis of properties and sizes of different particles present in it.
The three major types of soils are sandy soil, loamy soil and clay soil.
Sandy soil: In sandy soil 80% — 90% coarse contains sandy materials and 10% - 20% fine clay materials. Here the soil articles are very loosely packed, so it has plenty of air spaces. But this soil cannot hold sufficient water. The humus content of it is also very low.
Sandy soil is not suitable for normal plant growth as it is dry and has lesser nutrients. A very few plants like cucumber, gourd, watermelon grow in this soil.
Loamy soil: In loamy soil contains of sandy materials and clay materials are almost equal. This type of soil contains sufficient humus. Both aeration and water retaining capacity of this soil are moderate. These features make this soil very fertile. In this soil all types of crops and vegetables grows well.
Clay soil: In clay soil 80% - 90% contains fine clay materials and 10% - 20% coarse sandy materials. It is very rich in humus also. So this soil becomes very sticky and dense. Aeration is very poor but it can retain a lot of water. These features make this soil unsuitable for normal agriculture. Some larger plants like mango, jackfruit, etc., grow in this soil. This soil is used to build the walls of earthen huts and to prepare idols of gods and goddesses because when it dries up it becomes very hard.
Besides sandy soil, loamy soil and clay soil there are few other types of soils with some special features. These are silty soil, black soil, lime soil, red soil, salty soil and gravel soil.