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Soil Health Webinars

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January 11, 2021

Managing Soil and Crop Health for Wireworm Suppression

09:00 - 09:50 am

Presenter: Dr. Arash Rashed, Dept. Entomology, plant pathology and Nematology

Dr. Arash Rashed Dr. Rashed is an Associate Professor with the Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology and Nematology at the University of Idaho. His Research and Extension programs are focused on integrated pest management of insect-transmitted plant pathogens and insect pests. He will be talking about the effect of soil mix on wireworm damage and the effectiveness of soil living natural enemies.


Soil Health: How Do Cover Crops and Cropping Systems Affect It?


Clair.Jones Dr. Jones is Montana State University's Soil Fertility Extension Specialist. His recent research and extension programs address management strategies to increase economic and environmental sustainability, with a focus on soil acidification, nitrate leaching, cover crops, and soil health.

January 12, 2021

Evaluating Soil Amendments for Disease Suppression in the Pacific Northwest USA

This presentation will share results of various research trials evaluating amendments of soil with agricultural limestone, composts, and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) for suppression of some soil borne fungal plant pathogens of vegetable crops in western and central Washington.

Lindsey.Du.Toit Lindsey Du Toit is a professor and extension plant pathologist in the Department of Plant Pathology. Lindsey completed a BS degree in plant pathology at the University of Natal-Pietermaritzburg, in South Africa, followed by MS and PhD degrees in plant pathology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in the USA. From 1998-2000, Lindsey worked as a plant diagnostician for Washington State University, before taking a faculty position in vegetable seed crop pathology at the WSU Mount Vernon NWREC, where Lindsey has been located for the past 20 years. Her program focuses on the biology, epidemiology, and management of diseases affecting vegetable and vegetable seed crops in the PNW.

Soil Health Indicator Analysis

Defining soil health is an evolving process. However, there are good indicators that can be tested in order to determine what practices contribute to healthy soils.  The discussion will focus on what tests are currently recommended to measure soil health indicators.

Kyle.Bair Kyle Bair is a soil scientist and the president of Soiltest Farm Consultants, Inc. in Moses Lake, WA.  Kyle has worked in the field of soil analysis since 2002 and is a 2008 (masters) and 2012 (PhD) graduate of Washington State University.  In addition to work at Soiltest, Kyle teaches introductory soil science at Big Bend Community College in Moses Lake.



January 13, 2021

Washington's New Sustainable Farms and Fields Program

​The new Sustainable Farms and Fields grant program has been created by the legislature at the Washington State Conservation Commission in 2020. This program is the result of feedback from both the agricultural and environmental communities and is intended to increase efforts to sequester carbon and reduce greenhouse gas emissions on agricultural land by providing technical and financial assistance to producers through conservation districts and other public entities. This talk will provide an overview of the program and demonstrate opportunity presented for farmers at all scales to increase soil carbon reserves and reduce fuel inputs.

Alison.Halpern Alison Halpern joined the Washington State Conservation Commission (SCC) in July 2018. She came to the SCC after working for the Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board at WSDA for thirteen years, first as its Education Specialist and then its Executive Secretary. She earned her Ph.D. in Ecology from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, NY, where she studied the ecology of a freshwater invasive plant. Although Alison and her husband are New England natives, they have lived in the Midwest, Southern California, and Upstate New York before calling the Pacific Northwest home.

Soil microbial communities: How do they relate to soil and plant health in dryland wheat cropping systems?

Will discuss recent research relating soil microbial communities (microbiome) to soil and plant health.  This research is from Inland PNW wheat and canola cropping systems in Ritzville and at the Cook LTAR

Tim.Paulitz Dr. Timothy Paulitz is a Research Plant Pathologist with the USDA-ARS Wheat Health, Genetics and Quality Research Unit in Pullman, WA. His research focus is on fungal and nematode root diseases of wheat, barley and other rotation crops, with an emphasis on the root and crown rotting fungi Rhizoctonia, Pythium, Fusarium and the nematode Heterodera (cereal cyst nematode). He has also worked extensively on root diseases in direct-seed cropping systems. In the last 10 years, he has investigated the bacterial and fungal communities in in the soil and roots of wheat cropping systems using next-generation DNA sequencing. He has investigated how farming practices such as direct seeding, crop rotation, herbicide use, and fertilizer may affect broad microbial communities, including beneficial microbes. He is currently working on soil health, how microbial communities and microbiomes benefit plant health by protecting against soil borne pathogens and drought stress.



January 14, 2021

Not All Carbon is Created Equal: Carbon Cycling, Management and Carbon Credit

In this session, we will discuss the carbon cycling and how management can influence the fate of carbon at different depths using studies synthesized from literature and implemented in iPNW regions, including a long-term research site. Also, a brief history of carbon credit marketing, evaluation systems and challenges faced in practice will be shared.

Qiuping.Peng Qiuping Peng is a research associate and soil scientist working in the USDA-ARS Northwest Sustainable Agroecosystems Research unit in Pullman, WA. She received her BS degree in Resources and Environmental Science at Northwest Agriculture & Forestry University, MS in Environmental Science from University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, and PhD in Soil Science from Washington State University. Her research interest focuses on C cycling in dryland cropping system and modeling efforts to facilitate carbon budgets involving various laboratory or field measurements. Her career passion is to serve as the bridge between science knowledge and stakeholders in growers and industry.


“The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways.”

-John F. Kennedy


WSU Farmers Network

Washington State University
Johnson Hall RM. 171
Pullman, Wa. 99163

Keith Curran   
 (509) 288-2324

Dr. Haiying Tao
(509) 335-4389

“You know, farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you’re a thousand miles from the corn field.”

-Dwight D. Eisenhower