Science News

Crop rotation, grazing rebuilds soil health


Soil gets tired. After years of supporting a rotating cast of crops, the soil’s nutrient supply is often exhausted.

Mudsnails provide water quality indicators

A tiny snail could be a big help to researchers measuring water quality along the U.S. and Canadian Atlantic coast.

Reed canarygrass: environmental foe, cattle food?

How do you host tens of millions of migratory waterfowl every year? The Rainwater Basin of southeast Nebraska provides a vital resting stop and feeding station.

Cover crops in nitrogen’s circle of life


A circle of life–and nitrogen–is playing out in farms across the United States. And researchers are trying to get the timing right.

Technology keeps rice fertilizer nice

Farmers make a lot of decisions. One of the most important is how much fertilizer to apply to their crops, and when to apply it.

Research finding ways to inject manure, preserve environment

What’s a responsible farmer to do? Manure injection is an important soil management practice that reduces the chance of manure runoff.

Tracking wastewater’s path to wells, groundwater


We often “flush it and forget it” when it comes to waste from toilets and sinks.

New “Buck” naked barley: food, feed, brew


Researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) are giving an ancient grain a new life: this barley is naked, but not in an indecent way.

Robotic weeders: to a farm near you?


The future of weeding is here, and it comes in the form of a robot.

Alfalfa loss? Annual ryegrass is a win


Meet alfalfa, a perennial legume used mainly as high-quality feed for dairy cattle. Alfalfa is also used as feed for beef cattle, horses, sheep, and goats.