Soil & Water Management Centre

Developing & improving your soils

Soils alive: the biological basis of soil health

  • 20 Jan 2016
  • 10:00 - 14:30
  • The Cart Shed, Devereux Wootton, Norton Canon, Herefordshire HR4 8QN
  • 1


  • Soil Biology Workshop registration

Registration is closed

"Soils Alive"

Soil biology, organic matter and structure - a practical workshop

Farmers, especially those in the Wye and Lugg catchments, are invited to this free meeting focusing on soil biology, soil organic matter, use of crop residues, manures, composts cover crops and waste products.

Come along to take a closer look at and learn more about what is living within our soils and how these organisms are essential to soil function and health. Take your turn at a microscope to see the fascinating life forms beneath your feet!

Please feel free to bring earthworms from your own farms for identification.

10.00 Refreshments

10.30 Introduction

Wayne Davies, local CSFO

10.45 Soil health and organic matter

  • what is soil and soil biodiversity
  • the soil biota and their function in nutrient cycling, pests, diseases and in structure generation
  • the role of carbon and the impact of tillage

Tom Sizmur, University of Reading

11.30 The role of earthworms in agricultural systems
  • species within the British earthworm fauna
  • how earthworms contribute to soil processes
  • farming practices to encourage healthy earthworm populations

Matthew Shepherd, Natural England

12.00 Discussion

12.15 Introduction to practical session

Matthew Shepherd
Simon Jeffery, Harper Adams University

12.45 Lunch

13.15 Soil biology: 

  • a practical session investigating soil organisms and soil structure
    • earthworm identification
    • visual assessment of soil health
    • soil organisms under the microscope
    • microbial communities and their effect on structure
All speakers

14.30 Close and Depart

The event is jointly sponsored and funded by the Soil & Water Management Centre and Catchment Sensitive Farming

Cover cropping – the opportunitiesn a rotation

Site Admin: Tim Chamen
t: 01525 405121/Mob 07714 206048

Events organiser: Tim Chamen
t: 01525 405121 m: 07714 206048

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