"This system will provide agricultural professionals and farmers with access to soil quality resources including: assessment tool information, models for various aspects of program development, soil quality related research, and lessons learned from programs that promote soil quality."
The organizers did a wonderful job with the meeting and are looking forward to building on their work over the next two years. This is a program to watch!
The SQN was a two-day conference, with the first day a series of field workshops. The first stop was Dancing Roots Farm - a small local produce farm that focuses on organic farming. The owners spoke to us about the history of the farm as well as their goals, objectives and philosophy regarding the importance of soil. The attendees had demonstrations on cover crop field sampling and we also looked at the different soils on site and the importance of understanding spatial variability within the soils across the small acreage farm and how it affects the crops grown and the associated managment considerations. The picture below shows the group looking at soil profiles and listening to soil scientist Andy Gallagher explain the soil landscape for the site.
The next stop was Edgefield McMenamins, which is a beautiful historical site complete with hotel and eating establishments. (They did, indeed, provide a great lunch!) Here there were three stations to visit for the group. One focused on aggregate stability and infiltration, another on soil quality assessment cards and the last on using soil compaction and the use of penetrometers related to soil quality.
|Having fun doing field tests.|
|Learning about Soil Quality Cards.|
|Edgefield McMenamins |
|Mount Hood at dawn from my hotel room window.|