Producing bermudagrass hay from fields receiving poultry litter provides both high-quality forage for ruminant livestock and a means of removing environmentally sensitive nutrients, especially phosphorus (P).
Taking a road trip through an agricultural landscape, the average person may feel the landscape is monotonous, offering views of acre after acre of corn and soybeans or fields of wheat. However, we know the reality is that farmers are working on a heterogeneous landscape. Some areas are less productive due to drought, some more likely to flood, and sometimes historical use or soil type can affect today’s yield.
Mulching is widely used to conserve soil water and enhance dryland maize yield in the southern and southeastern Asia. However, its effect on soil carbon sequestration and microbial biomass and activity is not well understood.
The soil-water retention curve is essential for understanding and modeling water and solute transport in the vadose zone and water availability for plants. However, measuring the soil-water retention curve is highly time-consuming and a fast and accurate method to predict it is needed.
Increasing tropospheric ozone concentration has endangered plant growth and crop production, further influencing greenhouse gas emissions from the plant-soil systems. Understanding the response of greenhouse gas emissions from differential ozone-sensitive wheat-soil systems to elevated ozone is important for evaluating the consequences of elevated ozone on soil carbon and nitrogen cycles, and there is a need for more research.
There was considerable concern about the direction of soil science education in the USA at the beginning of the 21st century, particularly in regards to declining enrollment. However, there is very little work looking at enrollment trends in individual classes or evaluating the academic majors of students who are taking soil science coursework.
The advent of no-till farming created an opportunity for more water-use-intensive cropping systems. Annual forages offer a way of increasing the cropping intensity of traditional fallow-wheat systems, without taking on the risk of annually cropped systems harvested for grain. Pea, and especially winter pea, is not well studied as a forage in dryland systems.