Soil Health

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by phasthound, May 27, 2012.

  1. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,308

    Odd .... why didn't he "reference" his own paper. :laugh:

    Despite the fact you would have everyone believe you have done an exhaustive review of all science regarding soils, you have not .... not even close. Further, if you think the opinion paper you posted settles the subject of soil health and fertility or lends support to your ridiculous claims here you are sadly mistaken. Beyond that, this paper you have posted primarily addresses sports turf on sand based systems .... how many people here work with sports turf on sand bases? What is the percentage of sand based turf vs. all the rest of the turf in the world? What about parts of the landscape that aren't turf?

    A small sample of published literature I have posted on this subject here before . I am sure you will find some research in there that does not agree with your opinion piece. Links may be broken, or not.


    Impacts on Microbes & Microbial Communities

    FERTILIZERS (Organic & Inorganic)

    The effects of chronic nitrogen fertilization on alpine tundra soil microbial communities: implications for carbon and nitrogen cycling

    Chronic nitrogen enrichment affects the structure and function of the soil microbial community in temperate hardwood and pine forests

    Chronic nitrogen additions reduce total soil respiration and microbial respiration in temperate forest
    soils at the Harvard Forest

    Changes in Soil Microbial Biomass and Bacterial Community in a Long-term
    Fertilization Experiment During the Growth of Maize

    Bacterial Community Structure and Diversity in a Century-Old Manure-Treated Agroecosystem

    Seasonal changes in soil microbial communities along a fertility gradient of temperate grasslands

    Responses of the bacterial and fungal biomass in a grassland soil to multi-year applications of dairy manure slurry and fertilizer

    Responses of grassland soil nematodes and protozoa to multi-year and single-year applications of dairy manure slurry and fertilizer

    Soil microbial biomass and selected soil enzyme activities: effect of fertilization and cropping practices

    Responses of Active Bacterial and Fungal Communities in Soils under Winter Wheat to Different Fertilizer and Pesticide Regimens

    Spatial and seasonal variation of gross nitrogen transformations and microbial biomass in a northeastern US grassland


    Soil biological quality of grassland fertilized with adjusted cattle manure slurries in comparison with organic and inorganic fertilizers

    Fungal biomass in pastures increases with age and reduced N input

    Fungal/bacterial ratios in grasslands with contrasting nitrogen management

    Soil microbial community responses to dairy manure or ammonium nitrate applications

    Chemical and biological indicators of soil quality in organic and conventional farming systems in Central Italy

    Application of fresh and composted organic wastes modifies structure, size and activity of soil microbial community under semiarid climate

    Structure and function of the soil microbial community in a long-term fertilizer experiment

    The role of tree leaf mulch and nitrogen fertilizer on turfgrass soil quality

    Long-term effect of mineral fertilizers and amendments on microbial dynamics in an alfisol of Western Himalayas

    Ground beetle abundance and community composition in conventional and organic tomato systems of California's Central Valley

    Organic and synthetic fertility amendments influence soil microbial, physical and chemical properties on organic and conventional farms

    Long-term effects of organic and synthetic soil fertility amendments on soil microbial communities and the development of southern blight

    Effects of cover crops, compost, and manure amendments on soil microbial community structure in tomato production systems


    Influence of irrigated agriculture on soil microbial diversity

    Response of microbial community composition and activity in agricultural and grassland soils after a simulated rainfall

    Flooding effects on soil microbial communities

    Microbial Communities in High and Low Recharge Environments: Implications for Microbial Transport in the Vadose Zone


    Redistribution of crop residues during row cultivation creates a biologically enhanced environment for soil microorganisms

    Effects of mycorrhizal roots and extraradical hyphae on 15N uptake from vineyard cover crop litter and the soil microbial community


    Nitrogen source influences wild mustard growth and competitive effect on sweet corn

    Nitrogen Fertilizer, Manure, and Compost Effects on Weed Growth
    and Competition with Spring Wheat


    Nitrogen mineralization and microbial biomass as affected by soil compaction

    Microbial Responses to Wheel-Traffic in Conventional and No-Tillage Systems

    Compaction alters physical but not biological indices of soil health

    Active fractions of organic matter in soils with different texture


    Microbial community responses in forest mineral soil to compaction, organic matter removal, and vegetation control

    Soil microbial community composition and land use history in cultivated and grassland ecosystems of coastal California

    Carbon and nitrogen conservation in dryland tillage and cropping systems

    Soil Scarification and Wildfire Interactions and Effects on Microbial Communities and Carbon


    Invasion by an exotic tree alters above and belowground ecosystem components
  2. Skipster

    Skipster LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,074

    Come on, Kiril! That majority of your links have nothing to do with turf at all! Apparently you haven't read those that do, since they agree more with my statements than with yours. I suppose next, you'll try to tell me how you practice precision ag on lawns without accounting for differences between lawns!

    Like I've said over and over, you guys can apply whatever you like to your lawns -- I'm not going to stop you. But, you're grasping at straws to find a way to back up what your salesman told you.

    Maybe you should ask yourself one question:

    If building soil microbial populations and soil health was such a good way to manage lawns, why isn't it recommended practice from the majority of university turf programs?
  3. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,584

    All right, before this gets out of hand.... instead of slinging mud at each other, I suggest we agree that there are different opinions on how soil biology works and move on. Neither side is going to convince the other and the discussion will continue to disintegrate.

    I brought up the subject of soil health not just as part of a good turf management program but also to highlight other reasons to improve the health of soils.

    Healthy soils
    • Decrease soil erosion and compaction
    • Reduces the amount of nutrients required for healthy plants
    • Conserves water by improving the soil’s ability to retain moisture
    • Stabilizes pH so nutrients can be readily absorbed by plants
    • Allows better root penetration
    • Stimulates root development due to better structure and density of the soil
    • Improves drainage especially in clay soils
  4. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    Only one person is slingging mud and ignoring what is written :rolleyes:
  5. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    I've come to understand that soils need to have beneficials thriving in them in order for the soils to be providing the environment for the plants to be thriving... that is no longer at issue...
    I always ignore the pages of senseless arguements between 2 reference-slingers, so perhaps I missed the next step of soil management that never gets addressed...

    Every article I've come across, stops short of stating what one can do to increase the beneficial population of microbes... nematodes like to eat bacteria, utilizing the high protien in them, then excrete N that is plant ready... [/b] but what if we are not growing healthy numbers of those bacteria?[/b]
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,308

    Come on skip. If you can't draw meaningful parallels between Ag/rangeland/forest soil management to turf & landscapes than you are more ignorant than I had previously thought.

    Again with the ignorance.

    Let's assume I am in the spray and pray biz, what do I apply to my lawns?

    Maybe you should ask yourself why you continue to put words in peoples mouths and make claims you never have any hope of supporting.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2012
  7. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,308

    Maybe if you read and understood those references you ignore (you know, the ones you don't post) you might have an answer to your question.
  8. Skipster

    Skipster LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,074

    So you don't know, either :laugh:
  9. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,584

    Let's be gentle please. Some people are trying to learn.
  10. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    Maybe some are are but I am not sure about others. I hope everyone reads some of the papers not the post so they can make up their own minds. The Koske paper as I read it is pretty much saying there is a NEED to inoculate new putting greens. The failure was firmly placed on the manufactures of the inoculates, one in being tained, two in dead spores and 3 in not enough spores in the recommended dose for TURF. The companies with viable spored did inoculate and colonize another form of grass called Corn.

    Reading some of these white papers are like pulling teeth but keep in mind, they are subjected to peer review. This is particularly true if someone is trying to get tenure and seek further research funding.

    I do not believe I have read any papers by anyone that says this is a "panacea". It is preferred to salvage and use native top soil, when that is present then you create a good growing medium. These products are an assist.

    Plant size is more of a function of irrigation and fertilization but again the Mycor improves plant uptake but does not replace those items. If you are subject to drought or watering restrictions... again these products are your friend. However, some dealers are less than reputable.

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