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Get the Dirt on Your Soil

Zoom in Soil

Healthy lawns and gardens start with healthy soil. But what makes a healthy soil? And how can you tell if your soil is healthy or not?

The series of videos listed below will help you get started on getting the dirt on your soil.

“Don't Treat Your Soil Like Dirt!”
PRESENTER: Becky Laboy, Education & Outreach Specialist for Ocean County Soil Conservation District
An attractive and productive yard and garden starts with getting to know your soil. ¬†This program will teach you the basics about soil, so you can start building a healthy foundation for your garden.  Don't treat your soil like dirt! 
To view this presentation, visit the NJAES YouTube channel at youtu.be/A3KtJIhzM3Q.

“Digging Deeper:  What's Your Soil Telling You?”
PRESENTER: Dr. Stephanie Murphy, Director of the Rutgers Soil Testing Laboratory
Get the scoop on your soil by taking a soil test!  Find out the importance of testing your soil, how to conduct a soil test, and how to interpret the results to keep your lawn and garden healthy and happy.
To view this presentation, visit the NJAES YouTube channel at youtu.be/O0rNVblU_08.

“Root Out Soil Compaction”
PRESENTER: Dr. Steven Yergeau, County Agent with Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Ocean & Atlantic Counties
Soil compaction is a major problem impacting your yard and garden.  Discover what causes compaction, how it affects soil health, and how to correct soil compaction in the home landscape.
To view this presentation, visit the NJAES YouTube channel at youtu.be/B-4-nCvSPvs.

An Organic Gold Mine in Your Yard
PRESENTER: Mr. Fred Schoenagel, Resource Soil Scientist for USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service
Organic matter is an essential component in soil. Learn about the function organic matter plays and how it can improve the health of garden soil. Plant and animal material we think of as dead - old brown leaves, broken and rotting branches, torn-up roots - are an organic matter gold mine, which feeds soil life and keeps soil healthy. Different forms of organic matter that gardeners can add to a soil will be defined and described.
To view this presentation, visit the NJAES YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/YlC49FxYHV8.

“Breaking Ground on Composting
PRESENTER: Ms. Sandra Blain-Snow, Recycling Program Aide with Ocean County Department of Solid Waste Management
Home composting is an easy way to improve your soil and help feed the organisms that live in it.  Learn how to turn your yard waste into an excellent source of food and shelter for your living soil.
To view this presentation, visit the NJAES YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/I0pfGoOXaPg.

BONUS VIDEO:
“How to Use the Web Soil Survey”
PRESENTER: Nicole Ernst, Geospatial Technology Professor at Harrisburg Area Community College & Associate Director, GeoTech Center
Learn more about the soil under your feet.¬† Watch this demo of how to use the Web Soil Survey to map your yard or garden’s soil.
To view this presentation, visit YouTube at youtube.com/watch?v=QRSipAAYQ1w.

For more resources on soil and its management, please visit our Understanding Soil Compaction web page at ocean.njaes.rutgers.edu/UnderstandingSoilCompaction.html

For more information, contact Steve Yergeau, County Agent II, at yergeau@njaes.rutgers.edu or 732-505-3671.