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1 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. 11 The Dirt on Dirt PART 3 – SOIL MANAGEMENT.

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Presentation on theme: "1 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. 11 The Dirt on Dirt PART 3 – SOIL MANAGEMENT."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. 11 The Dirt on Dirt PART 3 – SOIL MANAGEMENT

2 2 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. REVIEW  Parts 1 & 2 focused on the elements of Soil Science  In essence – “what you have”

3 3 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. IN THIS SECTION WE WILL COVER  Fertility  Drainage  Erosion  Tillage  Conservation

4 4 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. FERTILITY  We discussed testing, pH and essential nutrients

5 5 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WHAT DO YOU NEED TO DO?  Know what you are going to grow and what was grown the past several years  What is the history of previous fertilizer (and manure) applications  Obtain your soil test results and recommendations from your state’s Land Grant University  Consider pH goals

6 6 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. BRINGING IN SOIL QUALITY  Higher levels of organic matter lessen the need for fertilizer inputs  Better soil structure leads to better plant efficiency for capturing available fertility

7 7 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. DON’T FORGET  Many water quality issues are related to excess or improper fertilizer applications  Know Best Management Practices (BMPs)

8 8 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSIDER  Is the nutrient mobile in the environment?  What fertilizer product you will use?  When will you put it on?  Basic Agronomy

9 9 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. LAST SESSION  We discussed soil structure at length  Review –Good structure promotes increased root growth which leads to increased plant growth –More efficient use of soil fertility –Poor structure results in wet, poorly drained soils

10 10 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. DRAINAGE  Artificial drainage utilizes perforated plastic pipe to remove excess water  Water will only flow if the soil is saturated

11 11 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND  Design should be engineered  Remember environmental consequence  Draining wetlands is not advisable and potentially illegal

12 12 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. BENEFITS OF DRAINAGE  Increased productivity (economic and environmental)  Improved soil structure (due to increased biological activity)  Reduction in the loss of most contaminants  Reduced soil erosion

13 13 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. EROSION  Soil moving off site  Wind and Water What do these two things have in common?

14 14 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. AT ITS MOST BASIC LEVEL  Soil particles must be dislodged if they are going to move

15 15 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WIND EROSION  Soil particles are knocked loose by other soil particles  Cover the soil with either residue or a growing crop to prevent  Take steps to reduce wind speed

16 16 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WATER EROSION  Soil particles knocked loose by raindrops  The solution – cover the soil with a growing crop or residue

17 17 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WATER EROSION  Soil dislodged by moving water and other soil particles  Factors involved –Slope steepness and length –Water velocity when running off –Some soil types are more “erosive”

18 18 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WATER EROSION SUMMARIZED  A growing crop buffers raindrop impact and slows water runoff  Residue serves the same purpose when there is not a growing crop  Shorten slope length with engineering structures  Plant permanent cover in places where water wants to run

19 19 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. IN ADDITION  Most people learn better when information is repeated  We will revisit this later when we discuss conservation

20 20 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. TILLAGE  Why do we till? –Residue reflects light and protects from the wind – so high residue levels can lead to cool, wet soil –Seeds need heat to germinate, the growing season is shorter the farther north you go

21 21 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. BUT REMEMBER?  Tillage destroys soil structure  Buries or destroys residue that protects from erosion

22 22 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. THE ANSWER  The world isn’t perfect, it is pretty hard to have it all

23 23 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WHO SAID THIS WOULD BE EASY?  All management decisions need to be site and circumstance specific  It should be possible to strike a balance between conservation and necessary tillage

24 24 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. IN GENERAL  NRCS recommends at least 30% residue cover at the time of planting

25 25 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSERVATION  First and foremost – Familiarize yourself with your local resources –Natural Resources Conservation Service –Conservation Districts –Extension –Others?

26 26 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. YOUR CONSERVATION TOOLBOX  No-Till, Strip-Till, Mulch-Till

27 27 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSERVATION TOOLBOX  Grass waterways and buffer strips

28 28 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSERVATION TOOLBOX  Contour planting  Contour strips

29 29 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSERVATION TOOLBOX  Engineered solutions –Sediment basins –Terraces –Drop structures –Side inlet structures –Many more

30 30 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSERVATION TOOLBOX  Perennial cover –Pasture –Wildlife habitat –Cover crops?

31 31 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. CONSERVATION TOOLBOX  Windbreaks, shelterbelts, living snow fences = trees

32 32 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. IN CONCLUSION  We have covered the information, now lets move on to…  Your Plan!

33 33 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. YOUR PLAN  Evaluate what you have –Soil survey and descriptions –Soil test –Use history –Existing problems

34 34 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. YOUR PLAN  Your Goals –How do you plan to use your land? –Crops? Pasture? Native landscape? –Bring soil quality into your plans  Soil structure  Organic matter  Fertility  Conservation

35 35 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. YOUR PLAN  Action Items –Cropping –Drainage and/or engineering –Ground preparation –Fertility –Conservation

36 36 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. YOUR PLAN  Formulate what you think you should do  Then consult resource people to get their opinions

37 37 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. IN THE END  Stay flexible – Things change  Keep an open mind – You just might get some good advice  Stay goal oriented – Everything doesn’t happen all at once  Stop to smell the soil

38 38 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. WISHING YOU MANY HAPPY HARVESTS – WHETHER IT IS CROPS, OR JUST SUNSHINE AND FRESH AIR!

39 39 © 2011 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, this PowerPoint is available in alternative formats upon request. Direct requests to the Extension Store at Thank You! This product was developed with support from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture — National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA). Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed within do not necessarily reflect the view of the SARE program or the U.S. Department of Agriculture. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


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