Encyclopedia > Peat

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Peat is a dense accumulation of water-saturated, partially decayed vegetable tissue. It is the first stage in the formation of coal deposits.

After drying it is often used as a fuel. Peat is also dug into soil to increase the latter's capacity to retain moisture[?] and serves as plant food.

Peat is found in the ground. It has, unlike sand and clay, a non-mineral origin. It is formed in swamps and consist of the remains of the swamp-vegetation.


Peat is found in many countries, in hills and polders.

Characteristics It is soft and can be compressed. Under weight the water in the peat is pressed out (horizontally), and compression takes place. Peat deposits often pose a difficult to builders of roads.

See also peat moss[?], peat bog

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