float check The float used in an atmospheric vacuum breaker, preventing water flow when water pressure drops.

floating foundation A thick, reinforced concrete slab used instead of wall or column footings or foundations to support and distribute the load of a structure to a soil having low-bearing capacity. It is also called a raft foundation or mat foundation.

float switch An automatically actuated switch turned off or on by a float on a liquid surface.

float valve or float-controlled valve A

valve controlled by a float riding on a liquid surface allowing water to flow when it drops to a preset level and stopping water flow when it rises to another level. These are often used in water features.

floccose In botanical terms, composed of or bearing tufts of woolly or long, soft, fine, loosely arranged, and more or less tangled hairs. (Compare with tomentose.)

flocculate The aggregation of fine particles together. This is important in clay soils for the colloidal portions because they fill the pore spaces preventing aeration, gaseous exchange, or penetration of roots or water. Liming acid clay soils and the freeze-thaw process tend to encourage clay's ultramicroscopic particles to cling together in larger aggregates or crumbs allowing for freer water and airflow, etc. This texture can be destroyed by working the soil while wet, repeated walking over the soil, or equipment driving over the soil.

flolicaceous In botanical terms, leaf-like.

flood control Processes or constructed elements for the conveyance, control, and dispersal of flood waters.

flood elevation The elevation flood waters should reach at a particular site during the occurrence of a specific flood period. For example, a 100-year flood elevation is that elevation flood waters are expected to rise to in the event of a 100-year flood.

flood frequency The probability of a flood of a given magnitude occurring in a given year.

flood irrigation A method of watering plants where the area containing plants is flooded until the soil is soaked.

floodplain 1. Areas of rivers that are flooded periodically by the lateral overflow. 2. In hydrology, the entire area that is flooded every 100 years (average). 3. A land area susceptible to inundation by water as a result of a flood. This may be evident by land forms and may be defined by such, or it may be calculated by a flood frequency along with measurement of the drainage channel capacity to determine the elevation or extent of flooding along the drainage path.

floor area ratio (FAR) The floor area of a building or buildings on a lot divided by the total lot area.

floral structure The elements comprising a flower.


floret An individual flower in a cluster. This pertains to a spike or panicle of grasses, or to tiny flowers composing the head of a composite plant

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