Source: UNIV OF HAWAII submitted to
IMPROVING SOIL NUTRIENT MANAGEMENT THROUGH THE INTEGRATED USE OF WEB-BASED MOBILE TECHNOLOGY AND RAPID SOIL TESTING
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
NEW
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
1001551
Grant No.
(N/A)
Project No.
HAW08028-H
Proposal No.
(N/A)
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
(N/A)
Project Start Date
Nov 14, 2013
Project End Date
Sep 30, 2018
Grant Year
(N/A)
Project Director
Deenik, J.
Recipient Organization
UNIV OF HAWAII
3190 MAILE WAY
HONOLULU,HI 96822
Performing Department
Tropical Plant & Soil Science
Non Technical Summary
Empowering extension faculty and growers to make informed nutrient management decisions is a cornerstone of moving Hawaii's agricultural potential forward in the 21st century. The proliferation of smartphone technology combining internet access with GPS technology offers an unprecedented opportunity for extension agents and clients alike to make science-based site specific nutrient management decisions. Furthermore, the increasing accuracy, affordability, and accessibility of portable soil testing devices provide clientele with new opportunities to perform on-site soil fertility diagnosis to improve fertilizer use. Specifically, there is now an opportunity to bring on site soil nitrate tests to guide more efficient use of N fertilizers. The primary purpose of this project is to develop tools that will give extension agents, information, and portable soil testing equipment to make informed nutrient management decisions that simultaneously enhance productivity and protect our valuable natural resources. The project has three objectives: 1. Improve the delivery and comprehension of soil information to the public by developing a web-based soil information tools for the State of Hawaii; 2. Explore the use of in field soil fertility analysis including pH, electrical conductivity (EC), nitrate,and potassium (K); 3) to train extension agents in the use of mobile devices and in-field soil testing instruments to improve delivery of nutrient management decision making. The project will first, develop a soil atlas for the State of Hawaii and modify the UC Davis/NRCS SoilWeb app to make soil information accessible and comprehensible to extension agents, growers, and the general public, and second, evaluate the use of rapid in field soil fertility tests to guide fertilization in extensive vegetable production systems. Workshops and field days will be used to educate extension agents and growers on the use of mobile technology to improve nutrient management decision making.
Animal Health Component
100%
Research Effort Categories
Basic
(N/A)
Applied
100%
Developmental
(N/A)
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
1020110106040%
1330199106040%
6011499301020%
Goals / Objectives
The overall goal of this integrated project is to empower extension agents and various clientele to improve nutrient management decision making through the use of mobile technology and the exploration of portable soil testing technologies. The overall goal of this integrated project is to empower extension agents and various clientele to improve nutrient management decision making through the use of mobile technology and the exploration of portable soil testing technologies. Improve the delivery and comprehension of soil information to the public by developing a web-based soil information tools for the State of Hawaii. Explore the use of in field soil fertility analysis including pH, electrical conductivity (EC), nitrate,and potassium (K). Train extension agents in the use of mobile devices and in-field soil testing instruments to improve delivery of nutrient management decision making.
Project Methods
Objective 1: Improve the delivery of soil information At present soil information for the State of Hawaii is found in two published versions entitled "Soil Survey of the Islands of Kauai, Oahu, Maui, Molokai, and Lani"[1] and "Soil Survey of the Island of Hawaii"[2] and accessible online through the interactive, web-based "Web Soil Survey" tool (http://websoilsurvey.nrcs.usda.gov/app/HomePage.htm). More recently, the University of California, Davis and the NRCS adapted Web Soil Survey to operate in conjunction with GPS functionality on smartphones and tablets (SoilWeb) providing on the go access to spatially explicit soil survey information. This tool allows the user to call up NRCS soil survey information for a given soil series based upon GPS coordinates. While this represents a powerful advancement in getting information into users hands in the field, the information is still written and presented in technical language and formats not easily understood and usable for the non-technical user. In relation to Objective 1, this project proposes two ways to improve the delivery of soil information to the general public. The first approach will be to develop a web-based, interactive soil map for the State of Hawaii. The format will be based conceptually on the Rainfall Atlas of Hawaii (http://rainfall.geography.hawaii.edu/) whereby users can move their cursor over any island and call up information on specific soil series across the State. In this way, a user in the field will be able to identify a soil of interest, call up a general description of the soil including highlights of its unique properties, agricultural potential, and any precautions regarding environmental quality. The interface will allow the user to choose the level of detail in terms of description and data with the option to access the full suite of soil characterization data, classification information and the various capability ratings available from the Soil Survey database. The interactive Soil Atlas webpage will be developed collaboratively with the GIS Spatial Laboratory in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Management (NREM). The second approach will consist of modifying text in the SoilWeb app for smartphones into laymen's language. Presently, the SoilWeb app calls up soil series information and data directly from the NRCS Soil Survey database. This language is very technical in nature and difficult for most non-scientists to follow and use. Using language developed for the modified SoilWeb app will provide users with an intelligible description of the soil series. This work will be done in close collaboration with the Hawaii NRCS staff and an IT specialist. Other iOS and Android-based apps (i.e., CartoMobile and GISRoam) will also be considered as the SoilWeb app is modified for Hawaii. Additionally, the project will work closely with ADSC and other faculty in CTAHR, namely Dr. Russell Yost and Dr. Tomoaki Miura, to make an upgraded version of FACS available n the Web for clients to access soil and nutrient management decision support tools. Objective 2: Evaluating portable soil fertility testing alternatives A variety of portable soil testing instruments will be evaluated in the field. The instruments are listed in Table 1. The portable soil testing instruments will be evaluated by analyzing soil samples collected from commercial vegetable farms (both organic and conventional) on Oahu, Maui, Big Island, and Kaua`i, and at current field trials located at three CTAHR experiment stations (Poamoho, Waimanalo, and Kula Ag Park). In brief, the following procedures will be followed: 1) replicated soil samples (0-6 in) will be collected at each site and split in the field; 2) one sample will be analyzed by all 8 instruments in the field and the duplicate samples will be packed on ice and returned to the laboratory, 3) all samples will be analyzed by standard soil methods employed by the ADSC in the laboratory, 4) in field measurements will be plotted against measurements made in the laboratory and analyzed by regression analysis for quality assurance and quality control. Table 1. Portable pH, EC, nitrate and potassium sensors to be evaluated in the field. Parameter Instrument pH HANNA Instruments HI99121 Direct Soil pH probe pH Vernier LabQuest portable pH probe EC HANNA Instruments HI98331 Direct Soil EC Tester Nitrate Horiba B-741 LAQUAtwin Compact Nitrate Meter Nitrate HANNA Instruments HI96728 Nitrate Portable Photometer Nitrate Vernier LabQuest ion-specific nitrate electrode Potassium LAQUA Twin Potassium Meter B-731 Potassium HANNA Instruments HI96750 Potassium Portable Photometer Objective 3: Train extension agents Training modules on the use of mobile technologies and portable soil testing instruments will be developed and included in the PI's annual soil fertility workshop for extension faculty. Additionally, web-based training modules will be developed for rapid desemination. [1] This survey was published in 1973 and is available in hard copy and online as a pdf. [2] There are two versions for the Island of Hawaii. The first published in 1973 and available as a hard copy and online and the second published in 2013 and only available online.