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CONCLUSIONS:

Soil Formation (factors)

Land Use recommendation

    Native Prairie, grasses, terrestrial life

    Wetland mitigation/migratory waterfowl

    Outdoor recreation

    Agriculture

    Residential development

    Commercial/Industrial development

    Construction and fill

    Trees/ Shrubs

 

Soil Formation (factors)

Soils present at the Hartnett Site began forming at the end of the Ice Age, about 13,000 years ago.  They formed mostly in sandy parent material derived from glaciofluvial deposits (outwash).  Climatic conditions and native vegetation (see discussions elsewhere in this report), when considered as soil-forming factors, are essentially constant across the site except as a function of slope steepness and slope aspect.  South and west facing portions of the study area receive on average more direct sunlight than do the north-facing portions of the study area.  The affect of this difference was not addressed in this study.  However, it is likely that soils on south and west facing slopes in the study area exhibit higher soil temperatures, a longer frost-free season, and reduced soil moisture during the growing season.   On the other hand, soils on north facing slopes in the study area exhibit lower soil temperatures, a shorter frost-free season, and increased soil moisture during the growing season. 

Throughout the study area there is widespread but subtle evidence of prior cultivation, although the majority of the land has remained unplowed.  Several of the surrounding areas are currently being used for cultivation.  There is also evidence to suggest soil erosion resulting from cultivation played a significant role in the formation of the soils over much of the study area. Epipedons of soil profiles in lower positions in the study area are thickened suggesting material eroded off adjacent uplands.  

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Land Use recommendation-intro

The most significant consideration with regard to land use in the study area is slope.  The sandy texture soils in the study area are susceptible to wind and water erosion when the stabilizing protection of vegetation cover is removed.  This is especially true in steeply sloping portions of the study area.  Soils on uplands where adjacent steeply sloping portions of the study area already exhibit characteristics that are the direct result of soil erosion.  A and B horizons are thin over C-horizons formed in autochthonous glacial outwash (Wissota Terrace).  Soils in lower positions in the study area are thickened suggesting material eroded off adjacent uplands is, at least in part, being stored lower on the landscape.  Those adjacent to the stream are shallow to bedrock (<2 meters) and appear to experience seasonally high water tables.  Soils adjacent to the stream are also susceptible to seasonal flooding (as indicated by buried soils and natural levee deposits).  In general, the soils in the study area are fragile.  Their uses are limited by their erodibility.  In addition, soils in low landscape positions are impacted by seasonally high water table and shallow depth to bedrock.  Therefor, we recommend that future land use in the study area be limited to residential development along the upland portion of the site (atop the Wissota Terrace) and the remainder of the land be used for “low-impact” recreational purposes only.  Specific land use recommendations are provided at the following paragraphs. 

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Native Prairie, grasses, terrestrial life

There are several different vegetation covers that are suitable for soils of this site. Three types of habitat are important for wildlife: wild herbaceous plants, grain and seed crops, and grasses and legumes.  Six of the eight pits at the Harnett site have Hubbard soil, with one pit classified as Plainbo and one as Morocco.  The sites range in slope from 0 to 12%.  Both soil type and slope are important factors in determining which vegetation regime is suitable. 

All of the Hubbard and Plainbo pits are rated good for wild herbaceous plants, but the Morocco pit is seasonably wet and not suited to all species.  These plants can provide food and cover for wildlife, and are critical pheasant, quail, cottontail rabbit, and deer habitat.  This category includes native prairie grasses, asters, and goldenrods.

Grain and seed crops also provide important food and cover for geese, pheasants, quail, and small game.  The four Hubbard pits with 0-6% slopes and the Plainbo pit, which has a 2-6% slope, are good for grain and seed.  Morocco soils are good only when drained (we don't suggest draining them).  The two Hubbard pits with 6-12% slope are fair, and would require some extra maintenance.  Grain and seed crops include corn, oats, and soybeans.

Grasses and legumes are important habitat components for geese, pheasants, quail, and cottontail rabbits.  Representative plant species include bluegrass, timothy, alfalfa, and clover.  The Hubbard and Plainbo pits are good for these, while the Morocco pit is good only if drained, due to seasonable wetness and unsuitability for some species.

There is no one vegetation pattern that works well with every soil type of the Hartnett site.  The wild herbaceous plants are the best choice, as they grow well in Hubbard and Plainbo soils with up to a 20% slope.  Morocco soils, however, need extra maintenance.  The Morocco soil is not suited to all species, and needs careful selection of species that are adapted to seasonably wet soil.  Overall, this site is capable of supporting prairie vegetation and wildlife.  It is also suitable for trees and shrubs, but trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants are important for different wildlife, and the vegetation that should be planted depends on the specific uses and wishes of the landowner.

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Wetland mitigation/migratory waterfowl

The Wisconsin State Legislature defines a wetland as “an area where water is at, near, or above the land surface long enough to be capable of supporting aquatic or hydrophilic (water-loving) vegetation and which has soils indicative of wet conditions."   According to this definition, wetland creation/restoration is not be recommended on the Hartnett site.  All soils at the study site are moderately to excessively drained and much of the site is hilly.  Soils in a low landscape position and with slopes of 2% or less are necessary for wetland creation.  Much of the Hartnett site contains slopes of 2 to 12 %.  Slopes of pit #4 were less extreme (slopes ranging from 0 to 2%) and it is possible for a wetland to be created/restored here.  This pit contained evidence of extensive flooding, shown in the buried A horizon.  However, the limited extent of these soils in the study area preclude restoration/creation of a viable wetland.

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Outdoor recreation

Soils in the Hartnett study area are primarily Hubbard loamy sands.  This is a soil series consisting of deep well to excessively drained sandy soils on stream terraces and outwash plains.  Permeability is rapid; drought and wind erosion can be severe hazards, especially on steep slopes (see profiles 3,6, and 7 for examples of profiles with evidence of erosion in the solum).  Therefore, recreational land uses in the area are moderately limited.  Uses such as picnic areas, parks, campsites, and athletic fields are fine, however the areas are subject to erosion, and vegetation can be difficult to maintain due to the sandiness.  Using this area for golf fairways is not recommended.

The Hartnett site also contains small portions of land consistent with the Morocco and Plainbo Series descriptions in the Dunn County Soil Survey (Wing 1975: 27).  The Plainbo series has the same recreation capabilities and restrictions as the Hubbard series described above.  The Morocco series differs from the other two series a bit in the capability of handling golf fairways.  The Morocco series is not as prone to severe erosion so it has moderate capability of being used for golf fairways. The seasonal water table and low relief that are common to Morocco soils are the two considerations to look at before using this landscape for a fairway. 

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Agriculture

Upland soils on the Hartnett site are mapped as Hubbard loamy sands.  The Hubbard soil series is characterized as being poor, droughty, erodible, sandy soils on stream terraces and outwash plains.  These soils, in terms of crop production prove to be excessively drained, sandy soils that have a shallow root zone.  Although the Hubbard series is suitable for grain, seed, and other crops, it is extremely susceptible to wind and water erosion.  This is especially true on steep slopes which dominate the Hartnett site.  An alternative use for the land would be to plant a wood crop.  This would help to conserve the soil and water and provide habitat for wildlife, which adds to the aesthetic value of the land.  Species that would be suitable for this area are Jack Pine, Red Pine, White Pine and Northern Pin Oak.  Possible problems in planting wood crops on the Hubbard soil series include equipment limitations on the steeper slopes, low availability of water capacity, lack of diversity and low availability of plant nutrients.  We recommend that agricultural use be restricted in this area.

On the flat lowlands located below the hill slope, Morocco and Plainbo series can be found.  The Morocco series can be characterized as deep, somewhat poorly drained, loamy and sandy soils on stream terraces and outwash plains.  This land could be used to plant hay and small grain.  Crops grow well during the dry season because the soil has a high water table but crops could be damaged in wet years.  Water tolerant trees like Jack Pine and Aspen would be a suitable wood crop in this area.  Possible problems on the Morocco soil include restricted drainage, a high water table, subject to a flooding hazard which adversely affects the development of the stand or its management.  We recommend that it be left in its current state.

Like the Hubbard series, the Plainbo series proves to be excessively drained, sandy soils that also have a shallow root zone.  Although the Plainbo soil series is suitable for corn, grain, soybeans, and alfalfa, they are extremely susceptible to wind and water erosion.  Jack Pine, Red Pine, White Pine and Northern Pin Oak are also suitable species for wood crops in this area.  Possible problems in planting any crop in this area include the low available water capacity, and low fertility which could lower crop yields.  We recommend that the land be left in its current state. 

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Residential development 

The soils found at the Hartnett site on the upland Wissota Terrace are all of the Hubbard series. The Hubbard series consists of deep, well drained to somewhat excessively drained, sandy soils on stream terraces and outwash plains.  For residential development in the upland portion of the Wissota Terrace, we recommend using a septic system, but there is the hazard of contaminating the ground water.  There is a slight limitation affecting the foundation for low buildings.  Building near the slope is not recommended due to erosion of the hill slope. 

On the flat lowlands located below the hill slope, Morocco and Plainbo series can be found.  The Morocco series can be characterized as deep, somewhat poorly drained, sandy soils on stream terraces and outwash plains.  In the Morocco area, we recommend using a septic system, but there is the hazard of contaminating groundwater since you would be building in the area close to the stream.  Residential development will be limited because basements will likely need excessive pumping and septic systems would have to accommodate the higher water table.  Foundations may also become unstable under these wet conditions.

The Plainbo series can be characterized as moderately deep, excessively drained, sandy soils overlying sandstone.  In this area a septic system is recommended but the relatively shallow depth of sandstone on flat lowland portions of the site will negatively affect the efficiency of domestic septic systems.  There is a moderate hazard for contamination of the groundwater.  Residential development will be limited because basements could need excessive pumping, but building the foundation in this area is more stable than in the Morocco series.

Vegetation plays an essential part in preventing erosion.  High-density residential development would result in an increased risk of erosion due to the loss of vegetation, especially during construction. On steeply sloping portions of the study site we recommend implementing measures to prevent soil erosion during construction.  We recommend residential development be restricted to low-density, avoid steeply sloping and poorly drained portions of the site, and that aspects of home design, placement and landscaping that can alleviate soil erosion problems be implemented.

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Commercial/Industrial development

Soils within the Hartnett study site are mostly consistent with the Hubbard Series descriptions, a soil series consisting of deep, well to excessively drained sandy soils on stream terraces and outwash plains.  Permeability is rapid, drought and wind erosion can be severe hazards.  Due to the high permeability this is a terrible place for a sanitary landfill, sewage lagoon, or any other sort of waste disposal site.  Due to the high erodability, and low organic matter content of these soils they are not a good source of topsoil.  They are however a good source of sand and gravel and/or road fill.  Slight limitations are placed on the affects on building foundations (no skyscrapers recommended).  The study site could be suitable to excavations for underground pipe, sewer, phone, and electrical lines, depending on bedrock depth (although the sandstone bedrock here will be easy to excavate with heavy machinery). The potential for corrosion of metal conduits is low and would be suitable if proper excavation depths can be reached. 

The Hartnett site also contained small portions of land consistent with the Morocco and Plainbo Series.  Due to a seasonally high water table, saturation and the possibility of liquefaction, Morroco soils have moderate limitations with regard to building foundation stability.  The Plainbo soils have only slight limitations placed on them in this regard.  

The commercial uses of this site have been examined with the idea that a large industrial building or complex would be built there.  We would recommend against such use.  First, there is not sufficient room to do so without destroying much forested area.  Second, the area is rather secluded.  There are few roads to bring employees or customers, let alone carry heavy truck traffic.  Moreover, there is currently no utilities (electricity or water) at the site.  Finally, these soils are not the best medium to build in or on mainly due to erosion and hydrologic concerns.  We recommend a "lighter touch", such as recreational land use. 

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Construction and fill

Soils can be used for various purposes such as road construction, foundations of buildings and landscaping.  At the Hartnett site we encountered the following soils and acquired information from the Dunn County Soil Survey to describe their suitability for specific construction and fill purposes.

Hubbard HuA, HuB and HuC2: Pits #1,3,5,6,7,8

These soils are a poor source of topsoil due to their droughty, erodible, sandy nature.  However, they are good sources of sand, gravel and road fill.  There are slight limitations affecting foundations for low buildings and low corrosion potential for metal conduits. 

Morocco Mo: Pit #4

These soils are a poor source of topsoil due to their droughty, erodible, sandy nature.  They are a good source of sand and gravel and a fair source of road fill.  There are moderate limitations affecting foundations for low buildings because they are subject to liquefaction and piping.  There are also severe limitations for basements due to seasonal saturation at a depth of 1 to 3 feet.  Corrosion potential for metal conduits is low.

Plainbo PdB: Pit #2

These soils are a poor source of topsoil due to their sandy nature, but are good sources of sand, gravel and road fill.  There are slight limitations affecting foundations for low buildings and low corrosion potential for metal conduits.

The bottom line is, much of the site could be used for a sand and gravel operation.  However, the upland portion of the site is the only part of the site conveniently located with respect to road access.  This area is small, and soils here are prone to erosion.  We recommend extractive land use at this site be avoided.

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Trees/ Shrubs

Trees and shrubs provide shade, windbreaks, and necessary habitat for wildlife.  The tables below list the trees and shrubs suitable for planting in the Hartnett site  (An (*) indicates non-native species.  We do not recommend planting non-native species.).   Appropriate areas for planting individual tree species are also listed. Hubbard and Plainbo soil types include sites 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7 and 8.  These soils are excessively drained, coarse-textured or shallow soils that have low available water capacity. Morocco soils are somewhat poorly drained and poorly drained mineral soils and include site 4.  The drainage characteristics of these sites make them suitable for different species of trees and shrubs.    

Trees Suitable for Hubbard and Plainbo Soils 

 

Shade

Street Boarders

Lawns

Hedges and Screens

Windbreaks

Sunny Sites

Bur oak

Green ash

Flowering crab

Red cedar

Red pine

Hackberry

White ash

Paper birch

Russian-olive*

White pine

Black oak

Hackberry

Red cedar

Red pine

Red cedar

Silver Maple

Thornless honeylocust

White pine

White pine

 

Green ash

 

White spruce

Upright yew

 

Thornless honeylocust

 

Red pine

White spruce

 

 

 

Russian-olive*

 

 

Partially Shady Sites

Hackberry

Hackberry

White pine

Upright yew

White pine

 

 

White spruce

White pine

 

 

 

 

White spruce

 

  

Trees Suitable for Morocco Soils 

 

Shade

Street Boarders

Lawns

Hedges and Screens

Windbreaks

Sunny Sites

Swamp white oak

Green ash

White spruce

White cedar

White cedar

Hackberry

Basswood

Paper birch

White spruce

White spruce

Red maple

Red maple

Mountain ash

Lombardy poplar

White pine

Basswood

 

Weeping willow

Laurel willow

 

Green ash

       

White ash

       

Silver maple

       

Cottonwood

       

Partially Shady Sites

Swamp white oak

Green ash

White spruce

White cedar

White cedar

Hackberry

Basswood

Mountain ash

White spruce

White spruce

Red maple

       

Basswood

       

Green ash

       

White ash

       

  

Shrubs Suitable for Hubbard and Plainbo Soils

Shade Tolerant:

Shade Intolerant:

Ninebark, common

Blackberry, dewberry, blackcap raspberry

Arborvitae (some)

Cotoneaster

Bayberry or waxmyrtle

Crabapple

Barberry, Japanese*

Juniper, creeping

Bittersweet

Juniper, pfitzer

Currant, alpine

Lilac

Dogwood, gray

Maple, amur

Filbert (hazelnut)

Mockorange

Forsythia

Peashrub, Siberian

Grape

Pine, mugho

Hawthorn or thornapple

 

Honeysuckle

 

Myrtle or periwinkle*

 

Olive, autumn

 

Plum, American

 

 

Shrubs Suitable for Morocco Soils

Shade Tolerant

Shade Intolerant

Olive, autumn 

Elder, American

Plum, American 

Russian-olive*

Honeysuckle* 

Spirea, narrowleaf meadowsweet

Ninebark, common

Willow (shrub type, including pussywillow)

Hawthorn or thornapple

 

Aborvitae (some)

 

Bayberry or waxmyrtle

 

Chockberry, black

 

Dogwood, gray

 

Dogwood, pagoda

 

Dogwood, red-osier

 

Dogwood, roundleaf

 

Dogwood, silky

 

Spirea, Vanhoutte

 

Viburnum, American cranberrybush*

 

Viburnum, nannyberry

 

Viburnum, wayfaringtree*

 

Viburnum, mapleleaf

 

Winterberry, common

 

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