hardpan


hard·pan

noun \ˈhärd-ˌpan\

Definition of HARDPAN

1
:  a cemented or compacted and often clayey layer in soil that is impenetrable by roots
2
:  a fundamental part :  bedrock

First Known Use of HARDPAN

1817

hardpan

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Cemented or compacted and often clayey layer in soil that cannot be penetrated by roots. Lime, gypsum, iron, and other minerals may be carried up to the surface of soil by capillary action and deposited to form a natural concrete. In agricultural situations, special equipment may be used to chisel away hardpan so that crop plants can grow.

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