Social Sharing


  1. The Soil Fertility Lab is growing!

    Oct 26, 2017

    We are excited to announce the addition of a new post-doc to our lab. Dr. Christine Sprunger will be joining us in January after finishing her National Science Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Columbia University where she is working to identify mechanisms that increase soil carbon storage for improved soil health and crop productivity in small-holder farming systems in Kenya and Tanzania. Her work with our lab will assess how crop rotational diversity in Ohio contributes to ecosystem services such as soil carbon sequestration and water quality. She will explore the relationship between cover crop rhizosphere processes and nutrient cycling and will also investigate crop productivity, soil health testing, soil organic matter fractionation, and nitrogen and phosphorus retention. Christine holds a Ph.D. in Crop and Soil Sciences and Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, and Behavior from Michigan State University. She received a B.S in Forest Resources and a B.A. in Program on the Environment from the University of Washington with a minor in Human Rights. We are thrilled to have her join our team and cannot wait for her to begin her research with us!  


  2. Soil Fertility and Nutrient Management in Hops

    Sep 25, 2017

    The Soil Fertility Lab is looking for your input! We are interested in studying soil fertility and nutrient management in Midwest hop production but first need to determine from growers if there is a need and a strong interest in it. We are asking growers to take a brief survey regarding hop production (what varieties you grow, fertilizer regime, and soil testing) that should take no more than ten minutes to complete. There will also be an opportunity to provide contact information if you are interested in participating in a future study and learning more about soil fertility on your farm. 

    You can access the survey here:

  3. Looking for cooperators for study on pipeline effects

    Aug 29, 2017

    Are you a farmer who has had pipeline installed through your property? Are you wondering how the installation will effect your crop productivity? Concerned with compaction, mixing of top and subsoils, and other impacts installation has had on your soils? We are looking for cooperators to participate in a study we will be conducting beginning in 2018 that will examine all these issues. If you are interested in having your farm evaluated for effects of pipeline installation to crop productivity, please enroll here: For more information on our project, please visit the pipeline project page on our website.

  4. Soil Fertility Lab Publishes Paper on Soil Balancing

    Jul 24, 2017

    Vijay Chaganti and Steve Culman have published a review paper on soil balancing presenting a holistic overview of the topic, a literature review on basic cation saturation ratio (BCSR), and identifying knowledge gaps and research needs. To learn more about their research, click here. View the paper here: Historical Perspective of Soil Balancing Theory and Identifying Knowledge Gaps: A Review

  5. Meet the New Crew

    Jul 20, 2017

    With field season in full swing we figured it was time to introduce the amazing interns we have helping in our lab this summer. Our interns come from both the ORIP and SROP OSU programs as well as regular hires who will remain with us into the academic year. Read the full news story to learn more about our interns and the projects they are working on. 

    Top row: Madison Campbell, Meredith Mann

    Bottom row: Otto José Oppenheimer, Samantha Wander, Nakian Kim  

  6. Soil Fertility Lab Members Featured in Organic Farming Research Foundation article

    Jul 13, 2017

    The Organic Farming and Research Foundation featured Soil Fertility Lab members Steve Culman, Tunsisa Harisso, and Anthony Fulford in an article about their project, Evaluating Soil Protein as a New Soil Health Indicator. They are working to develop a soil test that can predict organic nutrient release and help decrease environmental risks and adoption barriers. They anticipate the test being able to predict crop nutrient availability and that the information can be used by farmers to employ best nutrient management practices improving productivity.

  7. The Ohio Sustainable Farm Tour and Workshop Series starts this month

    Jun 5, 2017

    This annual series of public tours features 33 organic and ecological farms and businesses in Ohio engaging participants with opportunities to learn about sustainable agriculture and local foods on the farm from growers and producers with years of experience. The series also includes educational workshops and four special events.

    All events are free and open to the public! The series runs from June to November.

    To see the complete listing of events with detailed descriptions, click here.

  8. Organic Farming Research Foundation Grant Awarded to OSU Soil Fertility Lab

    Apr 18, 2017

    The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) has recently announced the recipients of their 2017 research grant awards. We’re very excited that the OSU Soil Fertility Lab was one of five research groups from across the nation to be awarded a grant from OFRF for our project entitled, “Evaluating Soil Protein as a New Soil Health Indicator”. Our lab focuses on quantifying various aspects of soil health and with this grant we are hoping to develop better predictive tools of organic matter nitrogen supply to plants based on rapid and affordable soil metrics. The research project will further our understanding of the newly emerging soil health measurements in organic cropping systems. We will work with organic farmers on evaluating, communicating, and interpreting soil health test results, as well as developing factsheets focusing on soil health testing on organic farms. We are excited to begin this research and believe this project has the potential to positively impact nutrient management on organic farms in the Midwest and surrounding regions by furthering the development of rapid and affordable soil health tests.




  9. There's still time to enroll in our fertilizer recommendation trials!

    Apr 11, 2017

    We are still accepting cooperators for our fertilizer recommendation trials. This project is focused on addressing agronomic and environmental concerns with a robust and widespread re-evaluation of the Tri-State Fertilizer Recommendations. Learn more about our project: Updating Fertilizer Recommendations. If you're already familiar with our project and want to become involved, follow this link to sign up.

  10. Anthony Fulford and Steve Culman publish paper on fertilizer recommendations

    Mar 20, 2017

    The most recent fertilizer phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) rate recommendations for corn and soybeans grown in Ohio were published in the mid-90s and follow the buildup, maintenance, and drawdown approach. Validation of recommendations using today's farming practices is needed. In this study, fertilizer P and K application rates estimated to equal or exceed crop removal were applied and resulting corn and soybean grain yield and soil test P and K trends were observed throughout nine years of production at three sites in Ohio.