Cover crops, compost and carbon

Soil organic matter has long been known to benefit farmers. The carbon in this organic matter acts as a food source for soil microbes, which then provide other nutrients to the crops grown. Microbes, insects and small soil ...

Overturning the truth on conservation tillage

Just as we blend, cut, and fold ingredients together to follow a recipe, farmers use equipment to stir together soil and crop residue (stalks and roots of previous crops) before planting. This mechanical action is called ...

Active pharmaceutical ingredients can persist in the environment

Homeowners who rely on private wells as their drinking water source can be vulnerable to bacteria, nitrates, and other contaminants that have known human health risks. Because they are not connected to a public drinking water ...

Giving a chip about masa

Products we commonly buy at the supermarket, such as tortillas and corn chips, are made from food grade corn. The corn is grown, harvested, bought by a food company, turned into masa (dough from ground corn) through a chemical ...

Nitrogen from biosolids can help urban soils and plant growth

The "zero waste" trend could have a friend in the form of biosolids. Biosolids are the materials produced after domestic waste is treated in urban wastewater systems. In the past, most of this solid material was transferred ...

Unexpected culprit—wetlands as source of methane

Wetlands are an important part of the Earth's natural water management system. The complex system of plants, soil, and aquatic life serves as a reservoir that captures and cleans water. However, as cities have expanded, many ...

Where there's waste there's fertilizer

We all know plants need nutrients, especially nitrogen and phosphorus. To give crops a boost, they are often put on fields as fertilizer. But we never talk about where the nutrients themselves come from.

'Exotic' genes may improve cotton yield and quality

Cotton breeders face a "Catch-22." Yield from cotton crops is inversely related to fiber quality. In general, as yield improves, fiber quality decreases, and vice-versa. "This is one of the most significant challenges for ...

page 2 from 22