Definition of loam in English:



mass noun
  • 1A fertile soil of clay and sand containing humus.

    • ‘The soil is a silty clay loam with 3.1% organic matter.’
    • ‘But for farmers intending to grow soyabeans, it advisable to grow the crop on clay loam and sandy loam, which are the best soils for the plant.’
    • ‘Lodes of ore and inches of fertile loam have little bearing on a nation's prosperity and influence anymore.’
    • ‘They prefer well-drained soil - either fine sandy clay or heavy loam that is slightly acid to neutral - but will grow in almost any soil so long as it's not too wet or acidic.’
    • ‘At eight sites the soil texture was loam or light clay.’
    • ‘This tough plant will grow in exposed or sheltered aspects and in acid, alkaline or neutral soil of chalk, clay, sand or loam as long as it doesn't get waterlogged.’
    • ‘In the morning, Michael and I dumped five-gallon buckets full of compost, forest loam, sand, and leaf mold onto the root cellar's cold cement floor.’
    • ‘A soil mixture composed of about 2 parts fertile loam, 1 part leaf mold or peat, and 1 part sand or perlite is recommended for growing African violets.’
    • ‘The soil of all stands was a readily erodible silty or sandy loam underlain by a reddish sand and clay.’
    • ‘Crabro advena nests in soils ranging from coarse sand and loamy fine sand to silty loam and gravelly loam.’
    • ‘As good a soil as any is one composed of garden loam, sand, and well-rotted (never new) cow manure in equal parts.’
    • ‘The north side has some very good silty clay loam, while the southwest corner is very sandy.’
    • ‘Good soil structure is one that is equally balanced between sand, clay and loam.’
    • ‘Most need full sun and fertile, well-drained sandy loam with a neutral pH and abundant organic matter.’
    • ‘The preferred soil is coarse to fine, preferably hard, compact clay or silty clay loam.’
    • ‘Fortunately, too, within forty miles we have a wide variety of soils and landscapes - sands, pines, loam, oaks, prairie.’
    • ‘Most soils are a mixture of clay, sand, and loam.’
    • ‘The species occurs on sand, clay and loam, among low open woodland and in shrubland.’
    • ‘Heavy loam and clay soils especially benefit from this treatment.’
    • ‘The soil is a silty clay loam and located in the Finger Lakes.’
    earth, sod, ground, dirt, clay, turf, topsoil, mould, humus, marl, dust
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    1. 1.1Geology A soil with roughly equal proportions of sand, silt, and clay.
      • ‘Liddell silt loam is classified as a coarse-silty, siliceous, subactive, acid, thermic typic endoaquept.’
      • ‘Camp Nelson and High Bridge were dry woodlands in silty clay on steep, south-facing, gorge slopes, but Scotts Grove was a mesie woodland on level silt loam.’
      • ‘The Wellston series typically occurs on steep slopes with a shallow, acidic A horizon, while the Grantsburg silt loam typically occurs in long, narrow areas bordering or on ridgetops.’
      • ‘The soil at the experimental site is a Butler silt loam (fine, montmorillonitic, mesic Abruptic Agriaquoll).’
      • ‘It can be seen from Table 3 that TF values for agricultural plants are normally within the range of 0.001-1 for mineral soils with textures of loam or clay.’
      soil, topsoil, clay, silt, dirt, sod, clod, turf
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    2. 1.2 A paste of clay and water with sand, chopped straw, etc., used in making bricks and plastering walls.
      • ‘Similarly, the 1904 workmen set molds of brick and loam around plaster casts.’
      • ‘The walls of loam and natural stones are in the Tibetan building tradition, while the woodwork of the columns, facades and walls is Kashmiri.’


Old English lām ‘clay’, of West Germanic origin: related to Dutch leem and German Lehm, also to lime.