This site includes an overview of basic soil quality concepts, a soil quality glossary, and the online Soil Biology Primer. The site also features content focused on the role and benefits of soil organic matter, soil quality indicators and assessments, and soil quality management for major land uses. The resources and publications section provides numerous fact and information sheets, NRCS technical notes, and posters for training and display.
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.
The Soil Health foundation consists of four principles which are: soil armor, minimizing soil disturbance, plant diversity, continual live plant/root, and livestock integration.
Please click below to be taken to one of the four principles or Continue Reading...
North Dakota Takes Soil Health Internationally
Sharing Soil Health Principles on an International Scale
It all started in 2014 with an email from a South African study group, inquiring about a proposed visit to the Burleigh County Soil Conservation District’s Menoken Farm. The Elandslaagte Study Group is holistic minded, with a goal of farming with nature and a lifelong learning culture. Their membership is diverse and actively applies soil health principles to the landscape. Continue reading...
Soil Health Case Study: Coetzee Ranch in South Africa
The Coetzee Ranch is located in the Free State province of South Africa. De Wet and his wife Heleen are holistic management practitioners and approach resource management with holism in mind. The Coetzee’s and their four children have lived on the ranch for many years.
One glance at the beef cow herd shows cattle who are adapted to their environment, with good vigor and health. The Coetzee’s practice careful culling, removing weak links from the herd, much like the role the lion plays in its natural setting. One beneficial example of their past management is a cow herd which no longer requires routine dipping to control ticks. Continue Reading..
Soil Health Information
- National Soil Health Fact Sheets
- ND Rangeland Soil Health Fact Sheets
- Soil Health Assessment
- Soil Quality Indicator Sheets
- Does Glomalin Hold Your Farm Together?
How Does Soil Function?
Soil 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.
For more information please visit the National Soil Health Page.
Wade D. Bott
State Soil Scientist
(701) 426-3391 (cell)