Soil and Plant Scientists ·  Conduct research in breeding, physiology, production, yield, and management of crops and agricultural plants or trees, shrubs, and nursery stock, their growth in soils, and control of pests; or study the chemical, physical, biological, and mineralogical composition of soils as they relate to plant or crop growth. May classify and map soils and investigate effects of alternative practices on soil and crop productivity.



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Occupational Tasks ·  Communicate research and project results to other professionals and the public, and/or teach related courses, seminars or workshops.
· Provide information and recommendations to farmers and other landowners regarding ways in which they can best use land, promote plant growth, and avoid or correct problems such as erosion.
· Investigate responses of soils to specific management practices, in order to determine the use capabilities of soils and the effects of alternative practices on soil productivity.
· Develop methods of conserving and managing soil that can be applied by farmers and forestry companies.
· Conduct experiments to develop new or improved varieties of field crops, focusing on characteristics such as yield, quality, disease-resistance, nutritional value, or adaptation to specific soils or climates.
· Investigate soil problems and poor water quality to determine sources and effects.
· Study soil characteristics to classify soils on the basis of factors such as geographic location, landscape position, and soil properties.
· Develop improved measurement techniques, soil conservation methods, soil sampling devices, and related technology.
· Conduct experiments investigating how soil forms and changes, and how it interacts with land-based ecosystems and living organisms.
· Identify degraded or contaminated soils, and develop plans to improve their chemical, biological, and physical characteristics.
· Survey undisturbed and disturbed lands for classification, inventory, mapping, environmental impact assessments, environmental protection planning, and conservation and reclamation planning.
· Plan and supervise land conservation and reclamation programs for industrial development projects, and waste management programs for composting and farming.
· Perform chemical analyses of the microorganism content of soils to determine microbial reactions and chemical mineralogical relationships to plant growth.
· Provide advice regarding the development of regulatory standards for land reclamation and soil conservation.
· Develop new or improved methods and products for controlling and eliminating weeds, crop diseases, and insect pests.
· Conduct research to determine best methods of planting, spraying, cultivating, harvesting, storing, processing, and/or transporting horticultural products.
· Consult with engineers and other technical personnel working on construction projects about the effects of soil problems, and possible solutions to these problems.
· Develop ways of altering soils to suit different types of plants.


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Occupational Skill Set
Skill Relevance
·  Science 92%
·  Reading Comprehension 89%
·  Writing 88%
·  Critical Thinking 84%
·  Time Management 80%
·  Active Learning 80%
·  Speaking 74%
·  Active Listening 73%
·  Complex Problem Solving 73%
·  Mathematics 72%