Soil physical properties, including soil texture and soil structure, have a tremendous influence on its ability to function as a living productive ecosystem that sustains plants, animals, and humans. Physical properties have a direct influence on soil biological functions and can be considered a limiting factor in soil health. How farmers manage their soils have considerable impact on the physical properties that include structure, infiltration and permeability, aggregation and aggregate stability, porosity, bulk density, compaction, water holding capacity and available water, moisture and temperature.
The Soil Health Nexus has added a new “Drawer” in their Soil Health Toolbox titled, Soil Physical Properties. Extension Educators, Crop Advisors, Agronomist, and Agency staff will find several new “tools” at their fingertips to learn and teach Soil Physical Properties. The “Drawer” includes sections on permeability and infiltration, structure, texture, aggregation and aggregate stability, bulk density, compaction, transpiration, crusting, available water capacity, moisture, and porosity. Under each section, there are a number of resources that are available for teaching and learning. These resources include a collection of current research based bulletins, fact sheets, articles, research papers, curriculum, videos, and demonstrations that are available for use.