Co-authors: Jamie Patton and Francisco Arriaga, UW-Madison; Andrew Paolucci, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
Title: Exploring cranberry soil health: Comparing physical, chemical, and biological traits of WI cranberry marshes
Abstract: To better understand the impact of various soil health indices on cranberry bogs, composited soil samples were collected from high- and low-producing cranberry beds of similar construction, composition, and management. Soils were evaluated for several "classically established" soil health indicators, including active carbon, potentially mineralizable nitrogen, penetration resistance, available water capacity, microbial respiration, cellulose decomposition, phospholipid fatty acids, and routine soil fertility analyses. While these soil health indicators have been richly studied in conventional row crop agriculture, this work represents the first exploration of soil health in the low pH, high water table cranberry production environment. I compare test results from high- and low-producing bogs, identifying relationships between the individual indices and bed productivity.
Bio: Allison Jonjak works with cranberry growers and cranberry researchers to tighten the feedback loop between grower needs and research direction. Participating in research while working closely with growers to voice their agronomic needs, Jonjak applies her knowledge of plant physiology, acidic soil chemistry, entomology, and plant pathology to create connections throughout the cranberry industry.