A horizon

[ eyhuh-rahy-zuhn ]
/ ˈeɪ həˌraɪ zən /

noun Geology.

the topsoil in a soil profile.

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What does “barren” mean?
Also called zone of leaching .
Compare B horizon, C horizon.

Origin of A horizon

First recorded in 1935–40

Words nearby A horizon

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for A horizon

A horizon

noun

the top layer of a soil profile, usually dark-coloured and containing humus and from which soluble salts may have been leachedSee B horizon, C horizon
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for A horizon

A horizon

In ABC soil, the uppermost, darkest zone that is rich in organic matter. The upper section of the A horizon usually contains humus along with plant and animal matter in varying stages of decay. The middle section usually contains a high concentration of quartz or other minerals that remain following the leaching away of clay, iron, and aluminum. The lower section is typically transitional in nature between the A horizon and the B horizon. Also called zone of leaching
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.