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Showing posts from April, 2022

Soil test results provide clues about struggling soybeans in 2021 - Part 5

This article was written by Angie Peltier, UMN Extension crops educator and Naeem Kalwar, NDSU Extension soil health specialist. This is the second article in a series dedicated to this topic. Click here to read the first article in this series and here to read the second , here to read the third and here for the fourth .  Another cause of poor water infiltration and gas exchange The type of clay minerals that exist in the Red River Valley have a tendency to shrink and swell more than other types of clay minerals. When soils are wet or thawed, these clay layers swell, and when dry and frozen, they tend to shrink. The swelling property is even more pronounced when there is more magnesium than calcium in a soil. That happens due to the bigger hydrated ionic size of magnesium ions versus calcium, which when sandwiched between clay sheets, let more water seep through resulting in excessive swelling. Kalwar, an NDSU soil health specialist stationed in Langdon, ND, explains that i