SHiP- Soil Health Improvement Project


What is the Soil Health Improvement Project (SHIP)?

The ultimate goal of the Soil Health Improvement Project (SHIP) was to develop simple, low cost, and practical soil restoration techniques that transferred easily to the Ocean County homeowner or professional landscaper. Together, the SHIP partners set out to identify the optimal physical, chemical and biological properties of Ocean County’s sandy soils with a series of landscape experiments, including assessing compaction, adding organic matter, and creating 5 native plant demonstration gardens at Jakes Branch County Park in Beachwood, New Jersey.

Jakes Branch County Park  illustrates two of the biggest challenges to healthy managed landscapes in the Barnegat Bay watershed:  sandy soils and highly compacted soils. Because of this, the park’s grounds were an excellent place to learn which soil improvement techniques would be most useful to Ocean County residents. The SHIP team evaluated soil health and biological activity quarterly for two years at the demonstration turf plots and native plant gardens at Jakes Branch, in addition to providing public education around soil health.

Watch a recorded webinar on “Soil Health Initiatives on Suburban Lands” showcasing the SHIP project. Click on the short video below for a quick overview of the SHIP project, and visit the SHIP at Jakes Branch webpage to learn about the landscape demonstrations at the site!

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 Other SHIP Resources:

Complete SHIP Grant Proposal

Complete SHIP Goals and Objectives

SHIP at Jakes Branch Fact Sheet

SHIP at Jakes Branch Education and Outreach

SHIP Webinar: Soil Health Initiatives on Suburban Lands

The Ocean County Soil Conservation District, Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve, Rutgers Agricultural Experiment Station, the American Littoral Society, Ocean County Parks and Recreation and Montclair State University teamed up to implement the Soil Health Improvement Project in Ocean County. The project was funded by the Barnegat Bay Partnership, Science and Technical Advisory Committee.

SHIP Project Web Pages:

  SHIP Main Page   SHIP Project Logo What is Healthy Soil?   SHIP Project Logo SHIP at Jakes Branch  SHIP Project Logo

SHIP Resource Library

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Ocean County Soil Conservation District
714 Lacey Road
Forked River, NJ 08731
(609) 971-7002