Page Title

Soil Health

REC Image
LREC Soil Health Webpage Cover Photo

SOIL HEALTH: for Present and for Future

North Dakota’s greatest natural resource is its land and soils. Remediating soil health issues such as salinity, sodicity, high magnesium (Mg2+) levels versus calcium (Ca2+), poor water infiltration, decreasing organic matter levels and lack of plant diversity will improve soil health for present day profitable and thriving farms, ranches and rural communities.

For the long-term improvement of soil health and sustainability of our agriculture, there are several practices producers can integrate into their operations over time. These practices will help reduce soil disturbance and loss of topsoil, increase soil organic matter, aggregates, pore space and water infiltration by improving structure and will maintain fertility by increasing nutrient and water holding capacity. In addition, application of livestock manure and introduction of cover crops in the rotation on a regular basis will add plant and microbial diversity and preserve and sustain soil health for future generations.

Research Reports
Around 10-12% of our crop land result in marginal yields to total loss of revenue due to the high levels of salinity (caused by excess levels of water-soluble salts) and sodicity (caused by excess levels of exchangeable sodium versus…
Topsoil blowing is a common sight in North Dakota. A 2012 NDSU study that revisited several sites in North Dakota, concluded that the average loss of topsoil in the last 50-years was around eight to nine-inches. A reduced form of tillage…
Due to the start of the wet weather cycle in North Dakota in 1993, especially in SE and NE, draining the excess soil water timely has been a top priority for producers. One of the ways to effectively drain excess soil water is to install…
Impact report on a producer with a saline-sodic site and a high water table. Includes a chart tracking improvements by measuring the Depth, pH, EC and SAR of the site before and after beetlime application. 
Impact report on differentiating between soil salinity and soil sodicity.
Impact report on remediating soil sodicity. Includes two tables helping to analyze the effects of tiling on soil salinity and sodicity with and without the application of gypsum.  
Impact report on the close relationship between growing cover crops and healthy soils. 
Results: 1 - 10 of 41 5