Skip Navigation

2021 NCSS National Conference – Virtual Field Tours

The National Cooperative Soil Survey will host a field panel discussion with four producers on Thursday, June 10, at 12:30 p.m. Central Time. Check out the videos below to learn more about the producers and their operations. Click on the presentation title to open a YouTube video or see the Virtual Field Tours playlist.

Soil scientist with a partner of Darden Farms.Billy Bridgeforth, Darden Bridgeforth & Sons Farm

In the 1800s, the Bridgeforth family began farming with just a few acres of land. Now, five generations later, the family has grown their property to include more than 10,000 acres. The family is focused on sound stewardship and committed to carrying their legacy forward in the right way for future generations.

Pictured from left to right: Christopher Davis (NRCS-State Soil Scientist – Auburn, AL); Mr. Billy Bridgeforth (Partner with Darden Bridgeforth & Sons).

NRCS employees with the owner of the Dee River Ranch.Annie Dee, Dee River Ranch

A committed soil health champion, Annie Dee is sustainably managing more than 10,000 acres on her west Alabama farm — and she’s educating others on how to do the same. Learn Annie’s story and how she became a self-taught farmer and conservationist.

Pictured front, left to right: Alison Steglich (NRCS-Soil Data Quality Specialist – Auburn, AL); Danielle Smith (NRCS-Resource Soil Scientist – Wetumpka, AL). Back, left to right: D’Andre Yancey (NRCS-Resource Soil Scientist – Montgomery, AL); Jared Worthington (NRCS-District Conservationist – Tuscaloosa, AL); Annie Dee (Dee River Ranch); Christopher Davis (NRCS-State Soil Scientist – Auburn, AL), and Greg Dansby (NRCS-Assistance State Conservationist for Field Operations – Grove Hill, AL).

Photo of Jayme Oates, Farmscape Solutions.Jayme Oates, NRCS Technical Service Provider, Farmscape Solutions and Ben Bramlett, Sustainable CBD, LLC

The 2018 Farm Bill reclassified hemp, and it is now legal to grow industrial hemp. NRCS contractor Jayme Oates is working to educate farmers on how growing hemp helps enhance soil quality. Check out this video to hear what she and a hemp farmer say about the positive economic and environmental impacts of this new commodity.

Pictured above: Jayme Oates, Director, Farmscape Solutions, Notasulga, AL.

Auburn soil scientist with the owner of Lazenby Farms.Mitch Lazenby, Lazenby Farms with Audrey Gamble, Ph.D.

Mitch Lazenby believes learning is a life-long journey, especially when it comes to soil health. A farmer who understands science, he collaborates with his local university to continually improve his farming operation. Watch his story of how research is there to help us all be better stewards.

Pictured from left to right: Audrey Gamble (Auburn University-Soil Scientist – Auburn, AL); Mitch Lazenby (Owner Lazenby Farms – Lee County, AL).


The following two videos will be featured during the conference breaks.

Soil scientists in a soil pit.Bama Soil

Even if you know the State soil of Alabama, you probably don’t know the story of how it came to be. In this video, meet the two men who chose Bama and why this story is important to Sweet Home Alabama.

Video will be featured on Tuesday, June 8, at 10:15 a.m.; Wednesday, June 9, at 10:40 a.m.; and Thursday, June 10, at 3:00 p.m.

Pictured in the soil pit: Cooper Nichols (NRCS-Soil Scientist – Tuskegee, AL). Back, left to right: Christina Kluttz (producer/director MAK Media – Auburn, AL); Alex Camerlengo (videographer MAK Media – Auburn, AL); George Martin (Soil Scientist – Retired NRCS); and Greg Brannon (Soil Scientist – Retired NRCS).

Soil scientists in Talladega National Forest.Terrestrial Ecological Unit Inventory at Talladega National Forest’s Oakmulgee Ranger District

In partnership with the University of Alabama’s Forest Dynamics Laboratory, the National Forests in Alabama has started the Terrestrial Ecological Unit Inventory at Talladega National Forest’s Oakmulgee Ranger District. The experiential learning opportunity gives university students a working knowledge of Federal agency program implementation through mission planning and field data collection using a geospatial mobile application. Data will be used for developing ecological site descriptions on forested ecosystems in Alabama, forest plan revision, NEPA analysis, and other natural resource mission projects.

The interactive virtual tour showcases the natural and historic treasures of ten montane longleaf pine sites surrounding Talladega National Forest with the video recorded at the Payne Lake Recreation Site. The Longleaf Pine StoryMap discusses current forest management challenges and explores longleaf pine’s southern heritage, intrinsic benefits, and some of the great incentives and resources available to landowners in Alabama's Talladega Mountain Longleaf Conservation Partnership working area.

Video will be featured on Wednesday, June 9, at 2:30 p.m. and Thursday, June 10 at 10:30 a.m.

Pictured above, left to right: Estella Smith (Forest Soil Scientist – National Forests in AL – Montgomery, AL) and Cooper Nichols (NRCS-Soil Scientist – Tuskegee, AL).