State of the Soils Assessment

Developing a baseline of soil health in Washington

To date, nearly 1,000 soil samples and management surveys across 50 different cropping systems have been collected as a part of the state of the soils assessment. This project is being led by WSDA and WSU, with support from staff, students, conservation districts, and agricultural professionals throughout Washington.

The State of the Soils Assessment has four primary goals:

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    Assess baseline soil health in Washington

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    Understand how climate, crop type, and management impact soil health

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    Develop cost-effective ways for producers to assess their own soil health

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    Develop crop-specific decision-support tools

Customized soil health reports

To build a better understanding of soil health indicators with producers, each participating producer receives an individualized soil health report, which compares their soils from those in similar crops, regions, and across the entire project and provides a description of each soil health indicator measured.

Applications for our soil sampling program are now closed

Are you interested in contributing soil data to the Washington Soil Health Initiative (WaSHI) State of the Soils Assessment? Are you a grower, an agricultural professional, a graduate student, or a conservation district staff member who wants to soil sample? Every year WSDA pays for a laboratory soil health analysis for eligible projects, in exchange for support in collecting samples and grower management surveys. WSDA also provides training and individualized soil health reports for participating growers. Data contributes to a variety of WaSHI projects which measure soil health across different regions and crops in Washington. Check back in Winter 2023 for future opportunities.

View an interactive map detailing where soil samples have been taken

Resources about the State of the Soils Assessment

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WSDA Soil Sampling Equipment and Supply List

Find the equipment and supply list on the WSDA soil health webpage

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WSDA Soil Sampling Videos

Find videos about soil sampling created by the Washington Department of Agriculture.

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WSDA Soil Health Standard Operating Procedures

This document outlines the procedures used for the state of the soils assessment and general soil testing at WSDA.