Official State Soil of Montana
Montana designated Scobey soil series as the official state soil in 2015 to recognize the important role soil plays in the economy and environment. All State Soils
Scobey soil was researched and promoted by 4th grade students from Longfellow Elementary School in Bozeman. Scobey is a unique soil that occurs on more than 700,000 acres of north-central Montana and is known to produce wheat of exceptionally high quality.
Excerpt: Senate Bill NO. 176
WHEREAS, Montana's official state symbols recognize the state's natural treasures; and
WHEREAS, Montana schoolchildren have initiated the designation of many state symbols, which has provided a valuable education about the symbol itself as well as about the legislative process; and
WHEREAS, agriculture is Montana's largest industry, generating in the state's economy more than $4.7 billion in services and products; and
WHEREAS, soil has been called the Earth's "living skin", sustaining not only Montana's agricultural industry but all of the state's plants, animals, and people; and
WHEREAS, legislatures in 21 states have designated a state soil to recognize the important role soil plays in their economies and environments; and
WHEREAS, Scobey soils are unique to Montana and occur on 1,261,000 acres mostly in the Golden Triangle and Hi-line areas of the state, producing high-quality wheat without irrigation, and are among the most productive of the 1,358 soils named and mapped in the state; and
WHEREAS, Scobey soils are scientifically and internationally recognized as fine, smectitic, frigid Aridic Argiustolls, representing the world's cool, semiarid grasslands; and
WHEREAS, Scobey soils from Montana are represented in the World Soil Museum and in a traveling exhibit developed by the Smithsonian Institution; and
WHEREAS, the Scobey soil series was named for the town of Scobey and was prominent in the first soil survey of the northern plains of Montana in 1929; and
WHEREAS, the 68th United Nations General Assembly declared 2015 the International Year of Soils; and
WHEREAS, 4th grade students from Longfellow Elementary School in Bozeman have researched the geological history, characteristics, and attributes of Scobey soils and their importance to Montana and believe them to be worthy of designation as a state symbol of Montana; and
WHEREAS, the Longfellow Elementary School students have shared their research and have solicited support for this designation from students who live in the Golden Triangle and Hi-line areas of the state.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MONTANA:
The soil series known as Scobey, of the taxonomic class fine, smectitic, frigid Aridic Argiustolls, is the official Montana state soil.