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Managing soil health for grassland

Code: 9781838796938
D. Barker, The Ohio State University, USA

Chapter synopsis: Soil health is a holistic concept that includes all the processes affecting the ability of soil to provide the ecosystem services we require from grassland. The primary ‘service’ provided by grassland is forage for livestock, but additional secondary ‘services’ can include benefits such as environmental protection, protection of valued fauna and flora, aesthetic qualities and improved soil health. We have no single parameter for measuring soil health, but we rely on a number of indicators that are still being refined and developed for practical use. Furthermore, we invariably do not control those indicators directly, but rely on indirect mechanisms to improve soil health. This chapter considers some of the major issues and strategies for managing grassland soil, with a specific focus on management of soil fertility and fertilizer input.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2017.0024.12
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Measurement of soil health 3 Managing soil health for grassland production 4 Fertilization for carbon (C) sequestration 5 Earthworms as an indicator of soil health 6 Soil nutrient status 7 Trace elements and heavy metals 8 Conclusion 9 Future trends 10 Where to look for further information 11 References

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