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4 the Soil Podcast

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    Episode 21-3

    What in the World is Pamunkey Soil? The Many Soil Types of Virginia with Dr. John Galbraith Part I In this episode, Jeff Ishee and Eric Bendfeldt speak with Dr. John Galbraith, who is a renowned soil scientist at Virginia Tech in the School of Plant and Environmental Sciences. John discusses his background in agriculture and how he became a student and teacher of soil science, while he explores the diverse soil types found across the state (including the Virginia state soil!) and touches on the different soil characteristics. Remember to visit to sign the pledge today and access more resources on soil health!

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    Episode 21-2

    Health from the Soil Up: A Conversation with Chris Lawrence of USDA-NRCS In this episode, Jeff Ishee and Eric Bendfeldt talk with Chris Lawrence, State Cropland Agronomist with Virginia Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS). Chris discusses how the soil works for all of us and the importance of taking care of and respecting it by following the four principles of soil health. Virginia NRCS and Chris Lawrence first started the Virginia Soil Health Coalition in 2013 to increase communication and promote consistency around soil health. You can find more information about Virginia NRCS and soil health in Virginia at the NRCS website. And don’t forget to check out the two books recommended in today’s episode: Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations by David Montgomery and The Worst Hard Times by Timothy Egan.

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    Episode 21-1

    Why Soil Health? Why a Podcast? In the inaugural episode of “4 The Soil: A Conversation,” host Jeff Ishee sits down with Eric Bendfeldt, Community Viability Specialist with Virginia Cooperative Extension, and Mary Sketch, Coordinator of the Virginia Soil Health Coalition. Mary and Eric have been working through Virginia Cooperative Extension and with partners of the Virginia Soil Health Coalition to launch the 4TheSoil Awareness Initiative. The initiative seeks to raise awareness of soil as a critical resource and get people to see themselves as important stewards of the land and soil. In this episode, they discuss why everyone should care about soil health and why they are launching a podcast to help increase awareness. For more information on the 4 The Soil Awareness Initiative and the Virginia Soil Health Coalition, please visit and