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Nutrient Management

Pots filled with different soils

Nutrient Management Research at WSU

Managed agro-ecosystems create an environment where sustaining plant/crop productivity requires nutrient management. In sustainable cropping systems, nutrient management typically involves the use of synthetic fertilizer materials, but also incorporates other management practices such as cover cropping and the use of bio-based fertilizers like manures and composts. Nutrient management research involves developing testing strategies to determine if nutrients are present in sufficient qualities for the cropping system. When a nutrient needs to be supplemented, nutrient management research identifies alternative strategies for soil amendments to maintain economically and environmentally sustainable agro-ecosystems.



Deirdre Griffin.

Deirdre Griffin LaHue

My research focuses on the impacts of agricultural practices (e.g. cover cropping, tillage, amendments, rotations) on soil health and the soil organisms that facilitate many of the functions we look for in a healthy soil, including strong aggregate structure, efficient cycling of nutrients and carbon, and disease suppression. I take a systems approach to understand processes occurring at the micro-scale, such as microbial community shifts, nutrient dynamics, or changes in carbon pools, and to link them to outcomes at the field-scale to develop soil management strategies that will improve the productivity, profitability, and long-term resilience of our cropping systems. I am also working to identify regionally-relevant benchmark values of soil health indicators to track progress towards improved soil sustainability.


Dave Huggins, USDA-ARS

Dave Huggins is Director of the Cook Agronomy Farm Long-Term Agroecosystem Research (LTAR) site and Co-Director of the Pacific Northwest Climate Hub. His research is in the area of Conservation Farming and Agroecology focusing on nitrogen use efficiency, carbon sequestration and overall agroecosystem performance.


Gabriel LaHue

Gabriel LaHue

My research program focuses on soil-water relations, soil fertility, and water-nutrient interactions. My soil fertility work is focused on the nutrient requirements of understudied crops and the relationship between soil properties and nutrient management. The interactions between water and nutrients are an area of particular interest to me, such as the application of fertilizers or pesticides through irrigation systems and soil moisture effects on nutrient availability and losses.