The main aim of the working group is to further develop the german stratification of humus forms based on a pedogenetic background. Basis are diagnostic soil horizons and sequences of soil horizons of humus layer and mineral topsoil. The state of the art is documented on our homepage: www.humusformen.de.
Our second aim is the information and professional training of students and members of the Soil Science Society by workshops and scientific meetings. You find a summary of our previous activities on our homepage (www.humusformen.de /Rückblick).
The recent structuring of humusforms is published at the German Guidelines for Soil description (Bodenkundliche Kartieranleitung, 5. Auflage 2005) und the guidelines for forest site mapping (Forstliche Standortsaufnahme 7. Auflage 2016, IHW Verlag, ISBN 978-3-930167-80-7). A draft of a further devlopement is published on our homepage.
In the revised humus form stratification the soil water regime is considered (humus aeration status: aeromorphic, aero-hydromorphic, hydromorphic). The humus forms are subdivided in sections (main group), classes (subgroup), humus forms (types), humus subforms (subtypes) and varieties as well as the stratification of soils. New diagnostic humus and soil horizons and sequences of soil horizons were specified. The results will be considered also in international classifications of humus forms.
Our recent systematic stratification shows deficits in the description of humus forms of little aerated sites and sites with terrestrial humus forms developing on (drained) peat. Furthermore, the demand of soil quality assessment in open landscape areas is very high but the characterization of humus forms beyond forest is still in a developing status. The humusform group targets to reduce this lack of knowledge.