Here are several pictures of the soil, I dug an 18" hole. You can clearly see where the soil changes from dark to red. I also notice that in the area where that change in soil occurs there is some black substance, looks like charred wood? I also found a nail at the same depth. Im thinking that it was graded some time ago and the compacted it? It seems the charred wood would be broken down by now though? I know the land was used for pasture in the '70's. The dark soil is (finally!) dry, but still smells slightly anaerobic. Come next rainfall we will be a foot deep in mud again.
I a in North Georgia, lots of pines, privet, weeping willows, and honeysuckle on the property. There is also a mature pine forest that stays very wet during the rainy months, but not like the cleared part of the property.
Would a soil test give me any insight as to whats going on? The lady at the extension office doesn't seem t think so.