Skip to main content

Episode 33: Soil Science and Crop Fertility with Bill Brush


Bill Brush is a wealth of knowledge about soil and crop fertility. After years of farming and working in ag retail, Brush became fascinated by the world beneath the soil’s surface, and that led to him becoming a full-time independent consultant. In this episode, Brush discusses what can be done to continue to build structure, biology and water holding capacity over time.

The three major components of science are physics, biology, and chemistry. It's like a three-legged stool. You have to have all three of those components to put together a successful fertility program.
Bill Brush
In Today’s episode:
  • Meet crop consultant Bill Brush
  • Learn about Brush’s journey from a generational farmer to an independent crop consultant.
  • Discover how Brush and his farmer clients manage soil physics, biology and chemistry to create successful fertility programs
ABC Update

For several years, the Almond Board of California has supported the Seeds for Bees program which provides free seed to growers who want to try cover crops for the first or second year. Almond Board of California Chief Scientific Officer Josette Lewis said the practice is proving beneficial for some growers, improving their soils, their pollinator health and their bottom line. Growers have already received their cover crop seed from Seeds for Bees for the 2022-2023 season and Lewis says the growth of the program speaks volumes about the value of cover crops.

“Our focus is on the role that cover crops can play in solving soil quality problems in the orchard. So that might be compaction, which impacts water infiltration… It also plays a role in pollinator health. The honeybees that every grower brings into the orchard are a pretty expensive part of growing almonds and research shows that having a blooming cover crop around the time of almond pollination can improve bee health.” - Josette Lewis

You can find more information about cover crops by downloading the Cover Crop Best Management Practices and by visiting the Almond Boards cover crop and forage web page.

The Almond Journey Podcast is brought to you by the Almond Board of California. This show explores how growers, handlers, and other stakeholders are making things work in their operations to drive the almond industry forward. Host Tim Hammerich visits with leaders throughout the Central Valley of California and beyond who are finding innovative ways to improve their operations, connect with their communities, and advance the almond industry.

ABC recognizes the diverse makeup of the California almond industry and values contributions offered by its growers, handlers, and allied industry members. However, the opinions, services and products discussed in existing and future podcast episodes are by no means an endorsement or recommendation from ABC. The Almond Journey podcast is not an appropriate venue to express opinions on national, state, local or industry politics. As a Federal Marketing Order, the Almond Board of California is prohibited from lobbying or advocating on legislative issues, as well as setting field and market prices.