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Get the dirt on the National Land Evaluation competition: Thorsby represents Alabama on the big stage

WBRC thorsby land judging
Published: Apr. 19, 2022 at 6:13 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) -The Thorsby FFA Land Evaluation team is representing Alabama at the National Land Evaluation Competition in May.

The group of four girls will compete against 100 schools in Oklahoma City.

They call themselves the “Dirt Nerds,” or “Queens of the Hill.”

“There’s different types of soil, course, moderately fine, fine,” Mesha Mims said.

“My favorite type of soil is a medium soil texture, the reason I say that is because it feels like play dough,” Tori Mims said.

The team is excited to compete on the national stage.

“I’m not just representing my 2A Thorsby High School, I am representing the state of Alabama.”

At nationals they’ll asses soil for depth, texture and purpose. Judges are looking for accuracy and the event is timed.

“In my opinion this contest is easier than the one we have in Alabama, they kind of give you the info, you have to know what to do with that info,” FFA Advisor, Brian Lucas, said. “In Alabama they have to determine that themselves.”

The team determines soil type by ribboning- or stretching out the dirt.

“Like a fine soil will stand straight up, not much flexible, but a moderately fine, it will bend,” Mesha said.

Which is honestly useful information even if you aren’t being judged in a high school FFA competition.

“We are all going to buy a house one day, we are all going to rent a house, you want to know what soil you have,” Mesha said. “You just don’t want to build on a fine soil.”

It’s a lot to learn, but the girls have a blast being outside!

Lucas said the team needs all the support as they venture west in hopes of bringing home first place!

“These kids work really hard, I know its not football, it’s not a sport, its a little strange, it’s land evaluation, but they work really hard,” Lucas said.

The competition starts May 2.

To keep up with the competition, click here.

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