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The Healthy Soils Task Force Education Committee will be concentrating on two key aspects of its mission.

“There are a lot of things going on in soil health in the state and around the country,” Education Committee Chairwoman Lisa Luntz said. “Our focus is on gathering that information in a centralized location for dissemination.”

Luntz, a Nebraska Agricultural Hall of Achievement inductee from Wakefield, said that resources on soil health are many and varied. So far, the education committee has connected with non-governmental organizations such as the Soil Health Institute, Soil Health Partnership and Soil Health Nexus. The Natural Resources Conservation Service has a lot of resources readily available, she said.

“The University of Nebraska has the Midwest Soil Health Clinic and has been researching no-till cover crops for years,” Luntz said. “So, resources and information are plentiful. Our goal is to coordinate these assets and communicate them to producers with efficiency.”

While the aim is to establish a clearinghouse for soil health information, Luntz said the task force must also remain aware of the uniqueness of various areas around Nebraska. There are vast differences — especially between east and west — in soil types, elevation and water availability, she said.

According to John Elder of the UNL School of Natural Resources and author of “Soils of Nebraska,” there are 385 soil series in Nebraska, in 31 different associations of soils occurring in different geographic areas.

“One size will definitely not fit all,” Luntz said. “We will work to develop management decision tools to address those differences.

Jon Burleson can be reached at jon.burleson@lee.net.

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