Soil Fertility Team


Steve Culman

Associate Professor of Soil Fertility

Curriculum Vitae
Steve's Google Scholar Profile and ResearchGate Profile

Steve is a soil scientist and agronomist. He has a diversity of interests in soil health, soil fertility and nutrient management, perennial grain cropping systems and agroecology.


Current Members


Bethany Herman, Lab Manager

Bethany's primary responsibilities include the management of laboratory spaces and assets, the execution of laboratory research, processing and tracking of samples, creating data spreadsheets from analysis results, training students in methodology and instrument operation, ordering of all laboratory supplies as needed, and organizing and processing payments to all cooperators in our research trials. Additional responsibilities include assisting with field research when needed.


Mason Gingery, Research Assistant

Mason helps with all things in the lab and the field. He processes samples, runs analysis, and calulates data. He also collects and records samples and data from the field. He has taken interest in setting up protocols for the two aggrate stability analysis equipment in the lab, the soil dunker and the rainfall simulator.


Leonardo Deiss, Postdoctoral Researcher

Leonardo is working with Dr. Scott Demyan and Dr. Steve Culman. His work in the Soil Fertility Lab is related to infrared spectroscopy of soils, soil health, and conservation agriculture. Leonardo will be primarily working with infrared spectroscopy of soils, which is an increasingly valuable technique as it reduces analytical costs, time, and labor, as well as enabling analysis of large soil sample sets for precision agriculture and landscape-to-regional scale studies.


Camila Gutierrez Manriquez, Research Scholar

Camila grew up in San Carlos, Ñuble Region, Chile where she received her Bachelor degree in Agronomy. Camila joined the Soil Fertility lab in January 2020, and has been working on no-tillage research. She is compiling and analyzing data collected since 1962 near Wooster, Ohio and since 1963 near Hoytville, Ohio to see how tillage affects yeilds and the interaction of tillage and crop rotation.  


Louceline Fleuridor, Ph.D. Student

Louceline’s PhD involves research on soil health for sustainable production of cellulosic corn, the use of Infrared spectroscopy to efficiently predict soil properties, as well as research to implement even more effective and practical soil health metrics. She is also working on a factsheet and a peer-review, compiling results from over 100 sulfur trials conducted in Ohio to synthesize crop response to sulfur fertilization and identify factors, such as: soil organic matter, texture, that may have influenced those responses.


Theresa Brehm, M.S. Student

The main focus of Theresa's research in the Soil Fertility lab revolves around documenting the impacts of underground pipeline installation on soil health and crop yields. She will be taking soil and yield samples at farms across Ohio over the course of two years, and will have one year of aerial data, which she plans to use to extrapolate the field data she has collected. Some main focuses of the research will be around soil aggregate stability, soil carbon fractions, and ground-truthing crop yield data.


Former Lab Members

Graduate Students

Pugliese Zone Gonzalez Wade
Jennie Pugliese,
M.S. 2017
Phoo Pye Zone,
M.S. 2018
Noely Gonzalez-Maldonado,
M.S. 2019
Jordon Wade,
Ph.D. 2019

Postdoctoral Researchers

Fulford Chaganti Hurisso Sprunger
Anthony Fulford
Extension Advisor,
University of California
Vijay Chaganti
PostDoc Researcher,
Texas A&M
Tunsisa Hurriso
Assistant Professor,
Lincoln University
Christine Sprunger
Assistant Professor,
The Ohio State University
Will Osterholz
Research Scientist,

Research Staff

Hoekstra Mann Sharma Saeed
Nicole Hoekstra
Research Associate
Meredith Mann
Research Assistant
Stuti Sharma
Research Assistant
Muhammad Tariq Saeed
Visiting Scholar 
Reynen Nyamai Dygert
Kenzie Reynen
Research Assistant
Priscilla Nyamai
Research Associate
Clay Dygert
Research Associate

Summer Interns

Faheem Ali (Case Western University),  Aista Sall (University of South Florida), Nakian Kim (Rice University), Otto Oppenheimer Lugo (University of Puerto Rico), Andrew Herzog (Ohio State), Samantha Wander (Ohio State), Noely Gonzalez-Maldonado (University of Puerto Rico), Madison Campbell (Ohio State).

Undergraduate Student Assistants

Nick LaRue, Ryan Hayes, Grant Ratliff, Cassie Reed, Annamarie Davies, Hannah Johnson, Lexie Popejoy, Brenden Tully, Jodi Livesay, Kristina Workinger.