Agricultural intensification to meet the food needs of an increasing global population has placed tremendous pressure on our ability to maintain the health and quality of our soils. More holistic agricultural systems that encourage sustainable waste management and reuse are urgently needed to protect soil health and its roles in food production and security. Vermicompost tea produced by worm-based agricultural waste treatment systems has the potential to simultaneously improve soil and crop health and promote sustainable waste management. We hypothesize that vermicompost tea will improve soil health and onion production by increasing the abundance of beneficial microbes and nutrients in soils following tea application. This research will test this hypothesis by evaluating the distribution of nutrient cycling and plant growth promoting bacteria (Objective 1), onion production (Objective 1), and subsurface nutrient transport (Objective 2) in soils before and after vermicompost tea application.
- Principal Investigator(s): Gardner, C.
- Investigator(s): Boll, J.
- Grant Amount: $36,300