A study of the soil as a resource in farming systems. Modification of soil conditions by various agricultural practices such as fertiliser use, liming, drainage and irrigation. Maintenance of the soil through conservation practices and use of soil and land resource information.
An introduction to the soil as it influences plant growth; the soil as a physical environment for plant roots; soil organic matter. The regulation of soil nutrient availability by biological and chemical processes; soil acidity and pH; the soil resources of New Zealand. A practical course based on the above.
Soil conditions in relation to nutrient cycling in agricultural production systems. Macro and micro plant nutrients. The composition, properties and uses of fertilisers. Soil water relationship, interactions with plant nutrient uptake and loss from soil. Methods of evaluating nutrient levels in soils.
Introduction to the main New Zealand soil groups including restored soils; soil attributes, limitations, appropriate land use and management including impact on the wider environment. Basic soil water properties. An introduction to drainage, irrigation, soil conservation, GIS and remote sensing, and their relevance to soil users and environmental management.
189.362 Soil Fertility and the Environment15 credits
A course focusing on the application of knowledge of soil properties and processes to address the compromise required between maximising agricultural production and minimising adverse environmental effects. The course will include consideration of models used for estimating fertiliser requirements as well as consideration of alternative low-input systems and environmental impacts.
189.363 Soil Resources and Sustainable Land Use15 credits
The attributes and limitations of soils for various sustainable land uses. Soil resource mapping systems and land use classification. Conservation and soil water management practices. The entry, storage and manipulation of land resource information using geographic information systems. This course is based on field trips and case studies.
This course is structured on selected topics that demonstrate how a knowledge of soil science explains the impacts of land management practices on the soil resources. Emphasis is placed on aspects relating to soil chemical fertility.
A course focusing on skills required to solve problems in selected areas of soil fertility. The course of 6 modules is selected from 8 distinct modules, covering 1. Advanced Nutrient Budgeting, 2. Soil - plant interactions, 3. Soil and plant analysis, 4. Trace elements, 5. Use of GIS in soil fertility and 6. Soil Organic matter, 7 Soil Water balance, 8. Soil fertility case study. Students are required to complete 6 modules.
Advanced theoretical and practical experience in land evaluation. Soil and land suitability, versatility and capability assessment of selected regions in conjunction with land-use problems. Practical experience in land resource inventory mapping using remotely-sensed images. Analyses of land resource inventory information using a geographic information system. Students may take modules of this course as a 15 credit Special Topic.
Eutrophication of natural bodies of water; biological interactions between soil materials and water; effect of land disposal methodologies on soil and water quality; organic and mineral pollutants, biological indices of soil and water contamination; and remediation and management strategies for soil and water pollution.
This course will provide the student with the knowledge and integrated skills to produce a NZ industry-standard, farm-scale, land and water management plan. This plan will correctly identify existing and potential soil and nutrient loss pathways, the causes of these losses, and provide justification for a range of mitigation options.
Advanced studies on the distribution and movement of water in soils. Design of drainage systems. Techniques for measuring soil physical properties. Indicators of sustainable land use. Models of water use and movement in soil.
189.759 Advanced Studies in Soil Science30 credits
A selection of six modules from the courses189.752 Advanced Soil Fertility,189.753 Advanced Soil and Land Evaluation,189.755 Soil and Water Pollution,189.758 Advanced Soil Conservation,189.759 Advanced Soil Water Management, and238.751 Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Emission Science for students wanting a broad course in soils relevant to production agriculture and horticulture or to natural resource management.