Soil type- Altvan-Satanta

I have looked at all of the suggested websites for determing appropriate soil type. I live in Northern Colorado, and everything I have found indicates my soil type is Altvan-Satanta. I do not know however if this is classified as loam, loamy sand, or sandy loam in the setup of my zones. Any advice is appreciated.

I don’t have a direct answer to your question. However, assuming that you followed the instructions here, step 16 will give you a bit of guidance when you don’t know the exact soil type. Again, IF you went through the guide and set up your ‘available water’ number, the only effect of the soil type will be on infiltration rate, and therefore the cycle-soak function.

Based on this it sounds like you have a well drained loamy sand.


Been hanging around this forum for a number of weeks and the first time I have come across these 16 steps. Really good stuff. Do I understand that IF the AW is set correctly then soil type does not matter except for soaking? My AW is set at 0.2 which is exactly what this government site says is my AWC.

Reason for asking is when I tested my soil it came up almost all clay (mason jar test) but this site shows silt-loam down about 16 inches, 20% Sand, 20% Clay and 60% Silt. Not real confident in my mason jar test as it was my first time and indicated almost all Clay (not sure about the right amount of dishwashing liquid I used), so I set my soil to Clay. I expected to have lots of clay in this area.

@franz I saw in another post that these tables were going to be added to the software. I have the Gen 2.
Was the software updated and is this the reason my AW is set at 0.2 based on my location?



1 Like


It was almost exactly the same for me here in Arizona. I would have sworn that we had clay all over the place, and the mason jar test sort of fooled me. I never got it to settle right and it seemed like clay, but wasn’t. I called a local place that does soil testing and they said Arizona was predominantly sandy loam, so I went with that for most of my zones.

The exception to using the sandy loam setting in my case was for my lawn. I was getting a bit of runoff so I set it to Clay Loam so it would cycle soak, since it wasn’t cycle-soaking with sandy loam due to the higher infiltration rate. Since I had the same AW number in either case the actual watering schedule didn’t change, other than taking a break every 20 minutes or so of watering. Does that make sense?

1 Like

@mckynzee, any chance of pinning that or other commonly used threads?


I’m pretty sure the absorption rate will cause the soak cycle to kick in sooner, so it has a purpose beyond soak duration.

1 Like

Agreed! I oversimplified. The point I was intending to make was that the vegetation should be watered to approximately the same depth (‘x’ inches) at the same frequency (every 'y days).

This is awesome! Thanks so much. I have made some adjustments to my AW. We’ll see how it goes!


Yes it makes sense. I like the soak cycles. Based on my settings with 10 Bermuda grass zones and clay soil it does like 9 cycles of about 5 minutes in each zone.

I’m thinking either pinning them, creating an “MVP” category, or transitioning them to help articles. Thoughts? Preferences?

Not sure I understand what “kick in sooner” means. Are you saying it will water more often or?

I think help articles. I remember looking through these as I was setting up my system and found the article on the mason jar test. But that is just the way I work. I am one of those that actually read all the instructions:slight_smile:


1 Like

I’m thinking either pin or ‘MVP’, and a help article. As @tomlay comments, he worked w/with help articles from the start. However, I know many that don’t, and would find it in the forums. Maybe you could pin or ‘MVP’ the thread, then lock it when you have the help article and provide the link to it from the thread.

1 Like

water less minutes before performing a cycle soak.

I’m one who reads the “destructions”, but that’s just how I am. Others may say they don’t need no stinkin’ instructions. :wink:

Discussions on this forum sometimes “get lost.” Posts about the “Water, Use It Wisely” PDF date back to July '15. There are some threads that have some very helpful information, but most people don’t dig down to find them.:smile:
@azdavidr’s spreadsheet is one of those really useful posts.
Perhaps “MVP” and help article?


The soil type is important for two reasons:

  1. Determining number of cycles to limit runoff.
  2. Measuring soil moisture depletion

Clay soil intake is very low for clay - 1/10 - 2/10" per hour. With pop up sprays water runoff can happen after only 2 or 3 minutes.

Since clay soil holds water tightly, the time between irrigation events can be longer. Soil aeration and addition of compost assists to improve air movement, root development and soil texture.

Sure hope this helps you.

Just to clarify, I believe this will be true if the user uses the default soil settings. However, if the user overrides the ‘available water’ setting to be the same value after having selected either ‘clay’ or ‘sandy loam’, the time between irrigation events should stay the same.

1 Like


1 Like