Abstract: This publication covers basic soil properties and management steps toward building and maintaining healthy soils. Part I deals with basic soil principles and provides an understanding of living soils and how they work. In this section you will find answers to why soil organisms and organic matter are important. Part II covers management steps to build soil quality on your farm. The last section looks at farmers who have successfully built up their soil. The publication concludes with a large resource section of other available information.
How does soil in its native condition function? How do forests and native grasslands produce plants and animals in the complete absence of fertilizer and tillage? Understanding the principles by which native soils function can help farmers develop and maintain productive and profitable soil both now and for future generations. The soil, the environment, and farm condition benefit when the soils natural productivity is managed in a sustainable way.
By Preston Sullivan NCAT Agriculture Specialist May 2004