Soil Sustainability Webinar July 17

AMES, Iowa — Michael Castellano, assistant agronomy professor at Iowa State University, will share his research on nitrogen and soil organic matter during the Iowa Learning Farms’ monthly webinar Wednesday, July 17. The 11:30 a.m. webinar is part of a free series, hosted by ILF, through Adobe Connect. The series is on the third Wednesday of each month. A computer with Internet access is all that is needed to participate.

Castellano will discuss the status and management of soil organic matter stocks in Iowa soils. “Soil organic matter, rather than fertilizer, is the largest direct source of crop nitrogen uptake – regardless of the amount of nitrogen fertilizer applied,” Castellano said. “Soil organic matter is also typically the largest sink for nitrogen fertilizer. Due to the effects of soil organic matter on nutrient availability as well as water holding capacity, soil organic matter is positively correlated with the amount and stability of crop yields.”

Castellano received his Ph.D. in soil science from The Pennsylvania State University in 2009. He has worked in agricultural systems in Arizona, Texas and Maryland. His research focuses on the use, transport and transformation of nitrogen.

To connect to the webinars, go to: at 11:30 a.m. on the morning of the webinar and log in as a guest. Castellano will be able to answer questions from webinar attendees via the Adobe Connect chat box. The ILF website contains links for archived webinars from all previous sessions: The webinar archive will also be available in a podcast through iTunes.