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Berlin Environmental Atlas

01.11 Criteria for the Evaluation of the Soil Functions (Edition 2013)

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01.11.2 Special Characteristics of the Natural Space

Description

The Ice-Age accretions have given the natural space of the Berlin area special characteristics considerably different from those of other landscapes in Germany. Particularly striking features include such geomorphological peculiarities as dead-ice kettles, end and push moraines, dunes and former glacial-stream channels.
Dead-ice kettles resulted from blocks of ice remaining from the last Ice Age which melted away later and which today appear as round, sometimes water-filled depressions featuring groundwater-influenced soils and mire associations. Loamy soils with sandy wedges in which dry fissures were filled with blown drifting sand during the late Ice Age are located on undisturbed glacial-till plateaus, and are recognizable in an aerial view as a regular polygonal network.
End and push moraines are accretion moraines which formed at the edges of the ice when there was a balance between melt-off and fresh ice. They appear in the landscape today as ridges and hills.
Late and post-glacial dunes are still clearly recognizable from their shapes, but hardly move anymore, due to their covering of vegetation.
The glacial stream channels have in many cases survived, and form chains of lakes and wetlands. The soil developments and the soil associations which occur are closely connected with the morphology and the source materials present, and reflect special characteristics and peculiarities of the natural space here.

Methodology

Only those soil associations have been considered which are associated with unusual Ice-Age-related geomorphologically features, and which have been able to develop undisturbed from the Ice-Age accretions. Soils with a special peculiarity may be only little anthropogenically affected; therefore, only near-natural soil associations were considered (cf. legend to Map 01.01). Soils consisting of land-fills and dumps, or rearranged soil material, have received no identification of natural spatial peculiarity. A compilation of soil associations which represent special characteristics of the natural space, due to their source material, their special morphology and their largely undisturbed soil development, is shown in Table 1. These are primarily moraine plateaus with sand wedges, moraine hills, glacial stream channels with groundwater soils and mires, flood-plains with alluvial soils, gyttjas and peats, and dunes.

The soil associations listed in the Table 1 receive a positive evaluation with regard to their natural-spatial peculiarity. All other soil associations do not show any particular natural-spatial peculiarity.

Table 1: Soil associations with a special natural-spatial peculiarity
New Number
Old Number
Soil Association Geomorphology
1080 8 pale leached soil, sandy-wedge rusty soil, rusty soil dunes
1090 9 podzol braunerde, podzol-colluvial rusty soil dunes
1100 10 podzol braunerde, rusty soil, colluvial rusty soil dunes
3020 SG 9, 10 podzol-rusty soil, colluvial rusty soil dunes
1050 7 rusty soil, ocher braunerde, colluvial braunerde glacial stream channels
1230 22 rusty soil, wet gley, half-bog gley glacial stream channels
1231 22 a gley braunerde, gley, bog glacial stream channels
1270 27 land-formed (alluvial) bog, land-formed half-bog gley, gley glacial stream channels
1280 28 eutrophic alluvial bog / half-bog gley, gley rusty soil glacial stream channels
1290 29 rusty soil, colluvial/ fossil gley, land-formed bog glacial stream channels
1300 30 rusty soil, wetty gley/ bog, land-formed bog glacial stream channels
1030 3 rusty soil, colluvial braunerde end and push-moraines, moraine hills
1040 4 rusty soil, regosol braunerde, colluvial braunerde end and push-moraines, moraine hills
1060 5 rusty soil, regosol, colluvial braunerde/ gley end and push-moraines, moraine hills
1110 72 podzol, regosol braunerde, colluvial braunerde end and push-moraines, moraine hills
1180 17 rusty soil, hang gley, limey slope mire end and push-moraines, moraine hills
1164 15 d gleyed braunerde, gley, bog bog soils
1240 23 gleyed rusty soil, limey gley, eutrophic bog bog soils
1251 c transitional bog - bog gley - podsol gley bog soils
1260 26 land-formed (alluvial) bog, (alluvial) limey bog bog soils
1270 27 land-formed (alluvial) bog, land-formed half-bog gley, gley bog soils
1280 28 eutrophic alluvial bog, alluvial half-bog gley, gley rusty soil bog soils
1290 29 rusty soil, colluvium/ fossil gley, land-formed bog bog soils
1300 30 rusty soil, wet gley/bog, land-formed bog bog soils
1320 24 alluvial gley, alluvial wetty gley, eutrophic meadow bog bog soils
3030 SG 24, 32,35,36 alluvial gley, meadow bog bog soils
1250 25 rusty soil- gley, half-bog gley, mesotrophic bog dead-ice kettles
1010 1 para-braunerde, sand wedge braunerde sandy-wedge
1130 12 para braunerde (periodically groundwater-influenced), sand wedge rusty soil (periodically groundwater-influenced) sandy-wedge
1310 31 para-rendzina, gley-para-rendzina, para-rendzina-gley limy peat clays
Table 1: Soil associations with a special natural-spatial peculiarity

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