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Soil and Water Conservationists Take Part in Unique Learning Opportunity in Palestine

TEMPLE — The Texas Soil Health Symposium was held on May 9-10, 2018 in Palestine, Texas. The symposium offered a unique opportunity for participants to gain a better understanding of soil properties including water infiltration, water holding capacity, and organic matter content.

The event was hosted by the Association of Texas Soil & Water Conservation Districts (ATSWCD), USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board (TSSWCB).

With over 50 in attendance, the symposium provided participants with research in dynamic soil properties and technical information about practical approaches to implementing a system to improve soil health.

"Alongside our conservation partners, we are excited to bring this learning opportunity to East Texas. Soil health is a hot topic as natural resource conservation continues to remain a top priority across the nation,” said David Basinger, TSSWCB Member of Deport, Texas.

Conservation demonstrations and soil pits showcased the functions of a healthy soil system and highlighted its improved water infiltration, soil porosity, increased biological activity, and greater nutrient efficiency.

The symposium featured leading researchers and producers in soil health. Speakers included: Clay Pope, USDA Southern Plains Climate Hub Facilitator, Jim Johnson, Soils and Crop Consultant for The Noble Foundation, Dr. Richard Teague, Professor of Ecosystem Science and Management at Vernon TAMU AgriLife Research Center, Dr. Gerald Smith, Professor of Plant Breeding at Overton TAMU AgriLife Research Center, Dr. Vanessa Corriher-Olson, Associate Professor and Extension Forage Specialist at Overton TAMU AgriLife Research Center and local East Texas Producer, Jimmy Downe.

As conservation practices continue to change, it is essential that the stewards of the natural resources in Texas stay abreast of the latest trends. TSSWCB recognizes the importance of education and outreach efforts and strives to provide valuable learning opportunities.

"Protecting and Enhancing Natural Resources since 1939."

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