soil nutrient News

  • World Soil Day hails symbiotic role of pulses to boost sustainable agriculture

    Soil and pulses can make major contributions to the challenge of feeding the world's growing population and combating climate change, especially when deployed together, according to Soils and Pulses: Symbiosis for Life, a new report by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization released on  ...

  • Climate change to disrupt soil nutrients in drylands

    The increased aridity expected this century as a result of climate change may disrupt the balance of key soil nutrients with a knock-on effect on soil fertility threatening livelihoods of more than two billion people, a study finds. The drop in nitrogen and carbon concentrations that occurs as soils become dryer could have ...


    By SciDev.Net

  • Increasing aridity will disrupt soil nutrient cycles in global drylands

    The drying of soils under global warming could disrupt the balance of nutrients in large areas of the Earth’s land surface, according to new research. The study focused on ‘drylands’ – arid areas with low levels of rainfall – which support over 38% of the world’s population. Such nutrient imbalances could diminish the provision of ecosystem services, such as ...

  • Soil biodiversity reduces nitrogen pollution and improves crops’ nutrient uptake

    Increased soil biodiversity can reduce nitrogen pollution, improve nutrient uptake by plants and even increase crop yields, new research suggests. The two-year study found that levels of nitrogen leaching from soil with an abundant soil life were nearly 25% lower than for soil with a reduced level of soil life. Practices which enhance soil biodiversity such as reduced tilling, crop rotation and ...

  • Nutrient Management Plans: A Study in Cause and Effect

    It seems practical on the surface. Nutrient management plans (NMPs) should supply plants with ideal amounts of nutrients, minimize runoff, and maintain or even improve the soil condition. And the farmer behind the plan would work with a set of conservation practices designed to reduce harmful pollutants while still obtaining optimal crop yields. However, many U.S. Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) ...

  • New software helps farmers manage nutrients

    University of Missouri Extension has released a new Web-based application to help farmers manage soil nutrient needs on farms. Nutrient management helps farmers set rates and timing of fertilizer applications, said John Lory, MU Extension nutrient management specialist. Plans are required for some farms in cost-share programs and permitted animal feeding operations. The free MMPTracker tool is ...

  • Conservation work minimizes sediment, nutrient runoff

    A USDA assessment shows benefits of farmer-led conservation efforts to reducing runoff, Agriculture Secretary highlights the need for conservation programs provided by a Food, Farm and Jobs Bill Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced a new U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) report that shows farmers have significantly reduced the loss of sediment and nutrients from farm fields ...

  • Cover Crops Capture Nutrients to the Benefit of Farmers and Water Quality

    Many factors contribute to the excess phosphorous that stimulates algal systems in bodies of water such as Lake Erie. Sources of excess phosphorous include urban stormwater, factories, sewers, household wastes and lawn fertilizer, and in some areas runoff from fertilizers or manure applied to fields. Fortunately, many farmers are already doing their part to improve water. ...

  • Managing nutrients presents both challenges and solutions to food security

    As global populations increase, a growing demand for food can be achieved through sustainable production and use of fertilizers which if not managed correctly will impact food security as well as water quality and availability, fisheries and biodiversity, says a report launched today by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The report, Building the Foundations for Sustainable Nutrient ...

  • Measuring calcium in serpentine soils

    Serpentine soils contain highly variable amounts of calcium, making them marginal lands for farming. Successful management of serpentine soils requires accurate measurement of the calcium they hold. Research published this month in the Soil Science Society of America Journal shows that multiple measurement techniques are needed to accurately measure calcium content in serpentine soils. To make ...

  • Keeping a pulse on the soil

    Leaving behind stubble is not ideal when shaving, but it’s a good practice to leave behind crop “stubble” after harvest. According to soil scientist Frank Larney, crop residue anchors the soil against wind and water erosion. Avoiding bare soils is one part of a soil conservation package he and his research team demonstrate in a 12-year experiment growing pulses in southern ...

  • Challenges in soil and water conservation

    Productive soils and clean water are essential elements for economic and social prosperity and environmental sustainability. Throughout history, civilizations have thrived or collapsed based on the availability of these vital resources. The lack of arable land and evidence of soil degradation have been identified as causes for the fall of many ancient civilizations, such as those in Mesopotamia, ...

  • Writing an equation for soil success

    Soil isn’t one size fits all. It may look the same under your feet – but under a microscope, that’s a different story. A plant’s roots, tiny bugs – these things can tell one soil from another quite easily. Soil scientists typically measure different aspects of soil — how much air it contains, how well it retains water, heat, and more — to ...


    By American Society of Agronomy

  • Healthy soils for a healthy planet

    Healthy soils are vital in a world challenged by climate change. We need to decide how best to use land to provide food for a growing population and how it can be used to mitigate the effects of manmade emissions. The quality of soil must be maintained or restored if it is to provide its essential services: cycling nutrients, water and air, supporting biodiversity and acting as a substantial ...

  • Manure runoff depends on soil texture

    Research has documented the rise of nutrient runoff from flat agricultural fields with high rates of precipitation that adds nitrates and phosphates to waterways. These nutrients increase the amount of phytoplankton in the water, which depletes oxygen and kills fish and other aquatic creatures. While injecting animal manure slurry into the soil has been proven to be an effective way of reducing ...

  • Mysteries of soil and nitrogen to be probed at Jamestown

    Making better use of soil moisture and nitrogen will be a major focus of the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Update at Jamestown on August 19. GRDC Southern Regional Panel chair David Shannon said improving efficiencies in the use of moisture and nutrients was an important investment for the GRDC and keenly sought by growers in South Australia’s Mid North. “While the ...

  • Southern soils mitigate manure microbes

    That swine manure sprayed on to fields adds valuable nutrients to the soil is well known. But what is not known is whether all that manure is bringing harmful bacteria with it. A new study looks at the levels of nutrients and bacteria in soils of fields that have been sprayed with manure for fifteen years or more. The research team, composed of scientists from the USDA-ARS Crop Science Research ...

  • The Quest ATR is perfect for testing soil

    The ecological health of soil can be monitored with the Quest ATR. The organic and mineral components of soil can be established by testing with ATR-IR spectroscopy. Check your plants/crops/etc have the right nutrients for good health. Make sure there is enough calcium, not too much nitrogen or carbon. Map large areas according to the deficit or abundance of minerals. The ...


    By Specac Limited

  • International soil conference opens in Brisbane

    “It’s underfoot but often forgotten yet our soil resources are crucial to our very existence,” says the Chief of CSIRO Land and Water, Dr Neil McKenzie. “Any gardener or farmer knows that soil is an astonishing material. It’s the natural reactor in the landscape that forms the basis for our supply of food, clean water and biodiversity.” Australia is a net ...

  • Critical Issues in Global Soil Health

    Soil health is rarely equated into discussions of climate change, environmental protection, and sustainable development. However, soils play such a vital role in the planet’s survival that life cannot exist without them. They provide the basis for food and fiber production; support a diversity of plant, animal, and microbial life; and regulate nutrient cycles and gas exchange with ...

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