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Healthy Soil

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Woods End Laboratories News

Remembering the early roots of soil health testing

July 4th, 2017

Soil health testing may well have come about due to events 40 years ago this summer. In 1977, The Ministry of Agriculture of Baden-Württemberg (Germany) released a definitive study which compared conventional farming methods with “biological” – defined as farms using “alternative” management for at least 10-years. The 85-page report focused on 9 pairs of […]

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Study shows Soil Health tests less variable than common soil tests.

February 3rd, 2017

A new study about spatial variability of soil tests conducted by University of Connecticut has found that common analyses for OM, K, P, Ca and Mg have much higher variability than thought, ranging between 42 and 93% – in other words, “extremely variable”.  The same study compared Solvita CO2, SLAN and WSA-VAST and found these biology […]

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Court Ruling on Compost Contaminants Brings Residues Back in Focus

August 17th, 2016

In a recent ruling (June 20, 2016) the US District Court of Northern California nullified USDA’s National Organic Program NOP “Guidance Document” pertaining to contaminants in compost. The result of the ruling is likely to bring back into focus a long-simmering issue of herbicide residues inadvertently present in composts. The plaintiffs, the Center for Environmental Health, […]

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Winds of Calima carry rich African soil to islands in the Atlantic

August 14th, 2016

Soil-destructive practices combined with the strong winds sweeping across Morocco and the Western Sahara are responsible for depositing soil in many countries around the Mediterranean and also out into the Atlantic ocean. Italy has a program to monitor the annual, measurable depositions of “dust bowl” soil from Africa and so does the Spanish Canary Islands, […]

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VOA’s rise in Compost as Food Waste Diversion programs increase.

April 25th, 2016

“More food-scrap based composts are coming into our lab than before and we’re seeing a significant increase in presence of fatty acids”, says chemist Jon Dyer, Woods End Labs. That could easily be explained by successful mandates for organic waste diversion which nationwide are increasing the amount of food scraps going to composting. On the laboratory side, it can also explain […]

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