A detailed soil survey was conducted in 1978 in the vicinity of the towns of Calmar, Thorsby, Warburg, Breton and Drayton Valley. The purpose of this survey is to supply soils information which constitutes a major portion of the physical inventory of land resources upon which land use planning is based. The area is within the jurisdiction of the Edmonton Regional Planning Commission.
Twenty-eight soil units, four undifferentiated land units, and three phases of soil units were mapped. These soils represent the Luvisolic, Chernozemic, Solonetzic, Gleysolic and Organic orders in the Canadian System of Soil Classification.
Well to imperfectly drained soils developed on tills of the Paskapoo Formation and the Horseshoe Canyon Formation origin have, for the most part, moderate limitations for most engineering and recreational uses. However some moderately well to imperfectly drained soils developed on fine to very fine textured clays have severe limitations for most uses due to slow permeability, high shrink- swell potential and undesirable surface soil textures. Poorly and very poorly drained soils have severe limitations for all uses due to a seasonal high water table.
A major portion of the soils around these towns are Luvisolic soils which have been assigned soil capability for agriculture ratings of 3 or 4 depending on climate, drainage and the tendency for crusting to occur at the surface. Soils in the vicinity of Thorsby and Calmar are mainly Chernozemic and have been given soil capability for agriculture ratings of 1, 2 or 3 depending on climate and drainage. Poorly drained soils have been given ratings of 3 and 4.