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This report illustrates how changes in management on Vermont farms can influence soil health metrics at the field scale. We’ve used regionally relevant science-based scenarios to demonstrate how selected soil health metrics that are associated with ecosystem services could change on farms in response to management practices at the field scale. These field scale management scenarios demonstrate that many practices in use by farmers in Vermont can have positive impacts on the soil health indicators of interest to the Vermont Soil Health & Payment for Ecosystem Services Working Group. The scenarios document potential for tradeoffs among soil health properties. Specifically, some of the scenarios illustrate how bulk density and compaction can worsen in instances when other soil health properties improve. Long-term research that measures multiple indicators of soil health and ecosystem services on recommended soil health management practices in Vermont is needed to support the evidence-base for soil health and ecosystem services incentive programs.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.