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Soil Health Awareness - Unlock the Secrets in the Soil

Unlock the Secrets in the Soil

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Unlock the Secrets in the SoilSoil is a living and life-giving natural resource. 

As world population and food production demands rise, keeping our soil healthy and productive is of paramount importance. So much so that we believe improving the health of our Nation’s soil is one of the most important conservation endeavors of our time.

The resources on this soil health section of our site are designed to help visitors understand the basics and benefits of soil health—and to learn about Soil Health Management Systems from farmers who are using those systems.

Soil Health Across the Nation

NEW Soil Health map 2014

A growing number of America’s farmers are using soil health management systems to improve the health and function of their soil—and we’re working hand-in-hand with these producers through our technical and financial assistance programs and services to help ensure their success. Click here to use the interactive map and find out what’s happening in your state regarding soil health and learn more about some of the farmers who are unlocking the secrets in the soil.

Delaware photo

Featured “Profile in Soil Health”
Chip Baker, Sussex County Delaware

Videos en Español

Spanish Video WebDescubre los Secretos del suelo: A new Spanish-language video, produced by NRCS in Missouri, describes the basics and benefits of soil health and outlines the four basic principles needed to improve soil health. Click here to watch the 4-minute video. Need more soil health information in Spanish? Click here to view NRCS’ Spanish-language soil health publications.


Explore the Science of Soil Health

Dr. Sjoerd Dulker

Cover crops: Conservation “without a carrot or a stick” for dairy farmers

Planting cover crops enhances the soil’s ability to function as a nutrient recycler. In this season’s  final episode of The Science of Soil Health, Penn State University’s Dr. Sjoerd Dulker talks with researcher and film maker Buz Kloot about how dairy farmers in Pennsylvania are using cover crops to improve their businesses without regulations or subsidies. Watch the two-minute video.

Profiles in Soil Health

'Under cover’ pastures yield multiple benefits for Missouri Farmer‘Under cover’ pastures yield multiple benefits for Missouri Farmer

Bob Ridgley’s primary purpose in planting cover crops is to increase forage for grazing. But in addition to getting late fall and early spring pastures for extra grazing, the Montgomery County farmer’s diverse cover crops are producing another benefit: improved soil health, which is resulting in better water infiltration and less erosion for his entire operation. Watch the four-minute video.