Left untilled, fields gain organic matter and maintain high yields, but there’s a tradeoff to consider when deciding not to till. Fields that aren’t tilled are less likely to erode, sending soil and the components of fertilizer, including phosphorus, downstream, a threat to water quality.
SENR faculty member and Associate Director Brian Slater reflects on partnerships that have meant a great to him while at The Ohio State University and especially this past year, as he prepared for hosting the 2020 National Collegiate Soil Judging Contest in Ohio.
The 5th Ohio State Environmental Film Series is underway, with screenings at 151 W. Woodruff in CBEC Room 130 at 7 PM (free pizza and beverages at 6:30). The February 25, 2020 event features the 2019 Soil Health Institute's documentary, Living Soil, which "showcases innovative farmers who enrich their soils to enhance life on Earth". It emphasizes the role soil health plays in water quality management. With the 60-minute film, there will be two extraordinary discussion leaders -- Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science Rattan Lal and Plain City, Ohio farmer and businessman, Fred Yoder.
With so many Ohio fields left unplanted this year, farmers should consider the risks to next year’s crops, soil experts from The Ohio State University warn. If wind or rain carry away the topsoil of a bare field, it can take years to rebuild that topsoil, said Steve Culman, a soil fertility specialist with Ohio State University Extension, the outreach arm of Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).Topsoil is the layer richest in microscopic organisms, which fuel plant growth. Besides losing topsoil, not having any living roots in a field can cause microscopic fungi in the soil to die off, harming the soil’s ability to support a healthy crop, Culman said.
Soil science research from across the university will be featured at this week's Soil Science Research Day on March 28 in Kottman Hall. You are invited to attend the inaugural Soil Science Research Day to promote soil science across all disciplines at the university and to increase awareness of its importance to the environment, society and economy. Dr. Gary Pierzynski, associate dean for research and graduate education with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences will give the keynote address starting at 1:00 p.m. in Kottman Hall 103 with a poster symposium immediately following in Kottman Hall Lobby. Light refreshments will be served.
The way Ohio State University scientist Rattan Lal sees it, many of Earth’s biggest challenges — from growing enough food to protecting water quality to reversing climate change — have answers in the soil.
As Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences(CFAES), Lal has spent his career working to find those answers. Along the way, he’s gained a global reputation for his research and advocacy on soil-related matters along with multiple honors and awards.
His latest recognition, a big one, comes on an appropriate day.
Stakeholders played a key role in the reverse field tour held on soil balancing last month at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) in Wooster, Ohio. Hosting the unique two-day experiential field tour were a team of faculty and staff in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, the School of Environment and Natural Resources, and the Agricultural Technical Institute at The Ohio State University. The field tour is part of a USDA NIFA funded project to advance understanding of soil balancing methods and outcomes.
A collaborative project on the restoration of Ohio strip-mine land is the focus of a front-page feature article in The Columbus Dispatch. School of Environment and Natural Resources soil microbiologists Richard Dick and Nicola Lorenzare part of a team that is studying native conservation of abandoned strip mine lands and are surveying mined soil at three sites to study microscopic organisms that help plants thrive.
Growing Returns, a Blog of the Environmental Defense Fund, discusses efforts led by Soil Fertility Specialist and School of Environment and Natural Resources Assistant Professor Steve Culman, in the post, “New guidance to maximize every drop of fertilizer in Ohio and beyond,” to update the Tri-State Fertility Guide for Corn, Soybean, Wheat and Alfalfa. To update the Tri-State Guide, Culman is using data from on-farm research trials he and his team have been conducting. This data will be used to inform the new Tri-State recommendations.