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Resources & Publications

Resources and publications offering information on soil health are provided below.

NRCS Directives and Series Documents

Soil Quality Technical Notes
Soil Quality - Agronomy Technical Notes
Soil Quality - Urban Technical Notes
Soil Quality - Soil Biology Technical Notes

Education and Outreach Publications

Soil Quality Demonstrations & Lesson Plans
Soil Quality Posters
Soil Biology
Practice Effects, Programs, Indicators, ...

NRCS Directives and Series Documents

Soil Quality Technical Notes

Note 1: Guidelines for Soil Quality Assessment in Conservation Planning (PDF, 564KB)

Note 3: Rangeland Soil Quality Information Sheets (PDF, 195KB)

  1. Introduction (PDF, 1MB)
  2. Indicators for Assessment and Monitoring (PDF, 1MB)
  3. Aggregate Stability (PDF, 2MB)
  4. Compaction (PDF, 1.5MB)
  5. Infiltration (PDF, 1MB)
  6. Organic Matter (PDF, 2MB)
  7. Physical and Biological Soil Crusts (PDF, 1MB)
  8. Soil Biota (PDF, 2MB)
  9. Water Erosion (PDF, 2MB)
  10. Wind Erosion (PDF, 2MB)

Note 4: Pastureland Information Sheets

  1. Introduction (PDF, 120KB)
  2. Indicators for Assessment and Monitoring (PDF, 170KB)

Note 5: Managing Soil Organic Matter: The Key to Air and Water Quality (PDF, 1MB)

Note 6: Soil Quality Test Kit

Note 7: Soil Quality Card

Note 8: Soil Quality Information Sheets

Note 10: Soil Quality Physical Indicators: Selecting Dynamic Soil Properties to Assess Soil Function (PDF, 210MB). See Soil Quality Indicator Sheets for the complete series of documents.

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Soil Quality - Agronomy Technical Notes

  1. Cover Crops (PDF, 96KB)
  2. Conservation Crop Rotation Effects on Soil Quality (PDF, 270KB)
  3. Effects of Residue Management, No-Till on Soil Quality (PDF, 100KB)
  4. Effect of Soil Quality on Nutrient Efficiency (PDF, 110KB)
  5. Herbicides (PDF, 130KB)
  6. Legumes and Soil Quality (PDF, 30KB)
  7. Effects of Soil Erosion on Soil Productivity and Soil Quality (PDF, 20KB)
  8. Liming to Improve Soil Quality in Acid Soils (PDF, 40KB)
  9. Managing Conservation Tillage (PDF, 25KB)
  10. Sunn Hemp a Cover Crop for Southern and Tropical Farming Systems (PDF, 30KB)
  11. Agricultural Management Effects on Earthworm Populations (PDF, 200KB)
  12. Long-Term Agricultural Management Effects on Soil Carbon (PDF, 170KB)
  13. The Knife Roller (Crimper): An Alternative Kill Method for Cover Crops (PDF, 1.3MB)
  14. Improving Soil Quality on the Southern Coastal Plain: One Farmer's Experience (PDF, 800KB)
  15. Soil Quality and Vegetable Production: One Farmer's Experience (PDF, 520KB)
  16. Interpreting the Soil Conditioning Index: A Tool for Measuring Soil Organic Matter Trends(PDF, 280KB)
  17. Soil Compaction: Detection, Prevention, and Alleviation (PDF, 320KB)
  18. Sod-Based Rotations: A Proven Old Practice to Improve Soil Productivity (PDF, 350KB)
  19. Crop Residue Removal for Biomass Energy Production (PDF, 385KB)
  20. Managing Cool, Wet Soils (PDF, 400KB)

Soil Quality - Urban Technical Notes

  1. Erosion and Sedimentation on Construction Sites (PDF, 45KB)
  2. Urban Soil Compaction  (PDF, 45KB)
  3. Heavy Metal Soil Contamination  (PDF, 50KB)

Soil Quality - Soil Biology Technical Notes

  1. Soil Biology Primer (HTML)
  2. Introduction to Microbiotic Crusts (PDF, 2MB)
  3. Soil Biology Primer slide set (PPT, 10MB)
  4. Soil Biology and Land Management (PDF, 600KB)

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Education and Outreach Publications

Soil Quality Demonstrations and Lesson Plans

Soil Quality Lesson Plans

Soil Quality Kit - Guides for Educators

Soil Quality Posters

Soil Biology

Practice Effects, Programs, etc.

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