University of WA soil health expert launches new free app for farmers

Headshot of Adam Poulsen
Adam PoulsenCountryman
UWA Emerita Professor Lynette Abbott shows off the new SOILHEALTH app.
Camera IconUWA Emerita Professor Lynette Abbott shows off the new SOILHEALTH app. Credit: Supplied/UWA

Farmers can now access a wealth of soil health information at the touch of a button with the launch of a new free app developed at the University of WA.

UWA Emerita Professor Lynette Abbott has condensed more than 50 years of research into the SOILHEALTH app, which provides essential information about complex aspects of soil health.

Launched last week, the app is available on IOS and Android phones via Apple and Google Play, and features an eBook, podcasts, and custom soil health animations.

While farmers are the main target audience, Prof. Abbott said it would be useful for anyone interested in soil health including teachers, students, and gardeners.

“All in-app resources can be downloaded online and then accessed offline,” she said.

“A farmer could tune in to a few podcast episodes while harvesting, or perhaps watch our animated video on ‘options for managing soil organisms’ at home.”

Prof. Abbott said researchers and staff at UWA Farm Ridgefield in Pingelly helped with the development of the eBook.

“I thank the farming community for inspiration in delivering this soil health resource,” she said.

Professor Abbott is a world-leading academic and science communicator in soil science and soil biology at the UWA School of Agriculture and Environment and The UWA Institute of Agriculture.

She runs hands-on activities demonstrating the benefits of soil biota for soil health, and leads the Land Restoration Demonstration Site research project at Farm Ridgefield.

The SOILHEALTH app was funded by the Federal Government’s National Landcare Program Smart Farms Small Grants.

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