Thursday, June 28, 2012
Angel and Oliver conduct a microbial respiration assay on the NCSU Agroecology Education Farm. This demo will be used as part of the CEFS internship program introductory soil science field day this Monday. Oliver and Angel are still smiling, even in 93 degree temps. What a great team!
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Not too far from our building, students from Department of Material Science and Engineering had a fun activity in the afternoon.
A 60 lb. of silly putty was dropped from the top of the library. Yes, from the 11th floor.
Do you think we should do the same but with 60 lb. of silly soil? Wouldn't that be fun?
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Congratulations to our undergraduate researcher Suzanne Flieshman, who has been selected as a Golden Opportunity Scholar by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America. Way to go, Suzanne! Twenty scholars are selected nationally each year on their academic achievements and interest in agronomy, crop and soil sciences. The program provides financial support for travel, lodging, registration, and other costs related to attending the Annual Meetings. Please join me in congratulating Suzanne, who now joins the ranks of our esteemed undergraduates Max and Jacob, who were scholars last year. See more here:
Suzanne hard at work in the legume field - sure can't beat this job!
Thursday, June 7, 2012
Ahoy Matey! I am marooned at the filming location for the Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. (Don't send rescue) Hampstead Estate is located on the north side of Dominica, affectionately called "The Nature Island". Most of the island is rural and mountainous. One of the very few sandy beaches is here. Unfortunately, after soil sampling they make us swim for our rum!
Soil sample site #4 - coconut farm. I'm working hard - I swear.
A pile of coconut husks. Looks like good compost, huh?
Greetings from the island of Dominica! The Grossman lab seeks new adventures in the land of pirates! Tony Kleese of Earth Wise Company invited us to soil sample on a historic coconut farm called Hampstead Estate. While we here we are evaluating how to integrate cover crops on an organic farm in the tropics. Mangoes, Pineapples, Bananas, Coconuts, and Rum - Oh My! It's a rough job..... but somebody has to do it.
Calling all soil geeks: These are Smectite rich soils. Smectite is associated with the shrink swell clays common in the tropics. There is no sticking the average soil probe down in there.
Old mango grove on Hampstead Estate.
Monday, June 4, 2012
May 3rd was the CEFS field day and many of our lab members came out for the fun in the (very hot) sun, with Matt, Erika, Arun, Sean, Sarah – even JiJY! – in attendance. Three busloads of participants visited our field site, where I gave a brief snapshot intro to the cover crop termination experiment, and the field staff then demoed the roller crimper on the blocks that will not be used for data collection this summer. The group really enjoyed seeing the roller-crimper in action!
Friday, June 1, 2012
And yet another one joins the team! Welcome to Matthew Brown, coming to us from NYC where he was a soil scientist in Central Park. Matthew will be studying decomposition of legume covers killed using different termination methods such as rolling, herbicide, and incorporation.