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Soil Health & Ecosystem Ecology Lab Publications


*denotes Sprunger lab advisee, +denotes student co-author/mentee in collaborative lab


Loggenberg, A., Du Preez, G., Fourie, H., *Martin, T.K., Sprunger, C.D. Under Review. Soil ecosystem restoration under maiz-based conservation agriculture in South Africa. Applied Soil Ecology.

+Vàzquez-Catoni, A.M., C.D. Sprunger, and M.S. Benitez Ponce. Under Review. History of chicken grazing stunts tomato seedling growth and influences associated bacterial endophytes. Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis.

Oldfield, E.E., Lavallee, Blesh, J., Bradford, M., Cameron-Harp, M., Cotrufo, F.M., Eagle,
A.J., Eash, L., Even, R., Kuebbing, S., Kort, E.A., Lark, T.J., Latka, C., Lin, Y.,
Machmuller, M.B., O’Neill, B., Raffeld, A.M., RoyChowdhury, T., Rudek, J., Sanderman,
J., Sprunger, C.D., Uludere Argon, N., Vidal, M., Woolf, D., Zelikova, T.J., and Gordon,
D.R. Under Review. Greenhouse gas mitigation on croplands: clarifying the debate on
knowns, unknowns, and risks to move forward with effective management
interventions. Carbon Management.


Agyei, B. Sprunger, C.D., Anderson, E. Curell, C., Singh, M. 2024. Farm-level variability in soil biological health indicators in Michigan is dependent on management and soil properties. Soil Science Society of America Journal.

*Singh, P., Kawa, N., and C.D. Sprunger. 2024. More questions than answers: Ohio farmers perceptions of novel soil health data and their utility for on-farm managementAgroecology and Sustainable Food Systems. 

*Naasko, K. *Martin, T.K., *Murray, J. and *Mann, M, *Mammana, C., Sprunger, C.D. 2024. Soil protein: a key indicator of soil health and nitrogen management. Soil Science Society of America Journal.

Sprunger, C.D. and *Martin, T.K. 2023. An integrated approach to assessing soil biological health. Advances in Agronomy. 

*Martin, T.K. and C.D. Sprunger. 2023. Nematodes require space: The relationship between nematode community assemblage and soil carbon across varying aggregate fractions. Geoderma.


Sprunger, C.D, A. Lindsey, *A. Lightcap. 2023. Above and belowground linkages during extreme moisture excess: Leveraging knowledge from natural ecosystems to better understand implications for row-crop agroecosystems. Journal of Experimental Botany.

           • Invited paper for special issue on Enhancing the Resilience of Plant Systems to

              Climate Change

           • USDA Funded flooding experiment photo selected for cover 

+Leiva Soto, A., S.W. Culman, C. Herms, C.D. Sprunger, and D. Doohan. 2023. Managing soil acidity vs. soil Ca:Mg ratio: what is more important for crop productivity? Crop, Forage, and Turfgrass Management.


*Martin, T.K. and C.D. Sprunger. 2022. Sensitive measures of soil health reveal carbon stability across a management intensity and plant biodiversity gradient. Frontiers in Soil Science. Special Issue: Soil Health and Security.

           • Invited paper for special issue on Soil Health and Security 

*Martin, T. and C.D. Sprunger. 2022. Soil food web structure and function in annual row-crop systems: How can nematode communities infer soil health? Applied Soil Ecology.

Wade, J., S.W. Culman, C.K. Gasch, C. Lazcano, G. Maltais-Landry, A.J. Margenot, *T.K. Martin, T.S. Potter, W.R. Roper, M.D. Ruark, C.D. Sprunger, M.D. Wallenstein. 2022. Rigorous, empirical, and quantitative: a proposed pipeline for soil health assessment. Soil Biology and Biochemistry.


*Martin, T., S.W. Culman, and C.D. Sprunger. 2022. Quality or Quantity? Determining the impact of fine root traits on soil health in row-crop agriculture. Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition. 

*Martin, T., J. Wade., *P. Singh, and C.D. Sprunger. 2022. The integration of nematode communities into the soil biological health framework by factor analysis. Ecological Indicators.

*Martin. T and C.D. Sprunger. 2021. Belowground dynamics influence nitrogen cycling and crop productivity in diversified corn systems. Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems5:705577.

           • Invited paper for special issue on Ecological Nutrient Management as a

              Pathway to Zero Hunger. 

Mestelan, S., N. Smeck, C.D. Sprunger., A. Dyck+, and W. Dick. 2021. Four decades of continuously applied tillage or no-tillage on soil properties and soil morphology​. Agrosystems, Geosciences, & Environment, 4(3), e20195. 


Sprunger, C.D., S.W. Culman, L. Deiss, C. Brock, and D. Jackson-Smith. 2021. Which management practices influence soil health in Midwest organic corn systems? Agronomy Journal, 113:5, 4201-4219.


Chaganti, V.N., S.W. Culman, C. Herms, C.D. Sprunger, C. Brock, A. Leiva Soto+, and D. Doohan. 2021. Base cation saturation ratios, soil health, and yield in organic field crops. Agronomy Journal, 113:5, 4190-4200.


Culman, S.W., C. Brock, D. Doohan, D. Jackson-Smith, V.N. Chaganti, C. Herms, M. Kleinhenz, C.D. Sprunger, and J. Spargo. 2021. Base cation saturation ratios vs. sufficiency level of nutrients: a false dichotomy in practice. Agronomy Journal, 113:6, 5623-5634. 


*Martin, T. and C.D. Sprunger. 2021. A meta-analysis of nematode community composition across soil aggregates: Implications for soil carbon dynamics. Applied Soil Ecology, 168, 104143. 

B.E. O’Neill, C.D. Sprunger and G.P. Robertson. 2021. Do soil health tests match farmer experience? Assessing biological, physical, and chemical indicators in the upper Midwestern United States. Soil Science Society of America, 85, 903-918.

           • Featured in CSA News June 2021 Issue

Lin, E., C.D. Sprunger, and J. Hwang+. 2021. The Farmer’s Battlefield: Traditional ecological knowledge and unexploded ordnances in Cambodia. Agriculture and Human Values, 38, 827-837. 


Sprunger, C.D., T. Martin*, and M. Mann*. 2020. Systems with greater perenniality and crop diversity enhance soil biological health. Agricultural and Environmental Letters, 5, e20030. 

           • Awarded ‘Featured Article’ for issue 

           • Featured in CSA News March 2021 Issue

           • Named 2022 Outstanding Paper of the Year 


Sprunger, C.D., S.W. Culman, A.L. Peralta, S.T. DuPont, J.T. Lennon, and S.S. Snapp. 2019. Perennial grain crop roots and nitrogen management shape soil food webs and soil carbon dynamics. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 137, 107573. 

Sprunger, C.D., S.W. Culman, C.A. Palm, and B. Vanlauwe. 2019. Long-term application of low C:N residues enhances maize yield and soil nutrient pools across Kenya. Nutrient Cycling in Agroecosystems, 114, 261-276. 

+Pugliese, J.Y., S.W. Culman, and C.D. Sprunger. 2019. Grain and forage harvest of a perennial grain crop, Kernza (Thinopyrum intermedium), increases root biomass and soil nutrient cycling. Plant and Soil, 43, 241-254.

Sprunger, C.D., S.W. Culman, G.P. Robertson, and S.S. Snapp. 2018. How does nitrogen and perenniality influence belowground biomass and nitrogen use efficiency in small grain cereals? Crop Science, 58, 2110-2120.

Sprunger, C.D., S.W. Culman, G.P. Robertson, and S.S. Snapp. 2018. Perennial grain on a Midwest Alfisol shows no sign of early soil carbon gain. Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, 33, 360-372.


Sprunger, C.D. and G.P. Roberston. 2018. Early accumulation of active fraction soil carbon in newly established cellulosic biofuel systems. Geoderma, 318, 42-51.


Sprunger, C.D., L.G. Oates, R.J. Jackson, and G.P. Robertson. 2017. Plant community composition influences fine root production and biomass allocation in perennial bioenergy cropping systems of the upper Midwest, USA. Biomass and Bioenergy, 105, 248-258.


*Martin, T.K. *Naasko, K., Malcarino, A., Bennet, A., Sprunger, C.D. The omics of soil health in no-till agricultural systems. To be submitted to Soil Biology and Biochemistry (Summer 2023).


Loggenberg, A., Fourie, H., Smith, H., Haney, R., *Martin, T.K., Sprunger, C.D., Du Preez, G. Soil ecosystem restoration under maize-based conservation agriculture in South Africa. To be submitted to Applied Soil Ecology (Summer 2023).

*Singh, P., Kawa, N. Sprunger, C.D. Farmer perceptions of soil health and climate resiliency. To be submitted to Journal of Soil & Water Conservation (Fall 2023).


*Naasko, K., *Martin, T.K., *Mann, M., Lindsey, A.L., Sprunger, C.D. The microbiome of flooded conditions provides early indications of resiliency in agroecosystems. To be submitted to Nature Microbiology (Fall 2023).

*Martin, T.K. and Sprunger, C.D. Soil food web resilience to drought is dependent on historical land use. To be submitted to Soil Biology and Biochemistry (Fall 2024).



Sprunger, C.D. *Martin, T.K., and *Singh, P. Integrating perennials into agroecosystems for enhanced soil biodiversity and long-term sustainability. In Press. Biodiversity and Bioeconomy. K. Singh (Ed.). Elsevier, Amsterdam, Netherlands.


Sprunger, C.D. and G.P. Robertson. 2018. Data from: Early accumulation of active fraction soil carbon in newly established cellulosic biofuel systems. Dryad Digital Repository. 


Culman, S., L. Deiss, B. Fortune, M. Gingery, *M. Mann, C. Sprunger, E. Hawkins, C. Brown, T. Hurriso, A. Fulford, D. Francis, L. Lindsey, B. Bergefurd. 2022. Baseline Assessment of Soil Health in Ohio. The Ohio State University Extension. 

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