Deep Row Entrenchment of Biosolids Using Hybrid Poplar
From Jeff Jackson
Presenter: Jonathan Kays, Forestry Extension Specialist, University of Maryland Extension
Description: Jonathan Kays, Forestry Extension Specialist, University of Maryland Extension, presented on the Deep Row Entrenchment (DRE) of biosolids using hybrid poplar.
Biosolids, formerly known as “sludge,” refer to the residual materials removed from sewage during the wastewater treatment process. Biosolids are commonly applied to land for beneficial utilization, but it has become increasingly difficult to apply these biosolids on land due to nutrient management regulations, accelerating land prices, the disappearance of farm land, and social issues surrounding odors.
The utilization of biosolids using short rotational crops of hybrid poplar trees solves many of the problems associated with traditional biosolids application methods and holds great promise. Deep row entrenchment (DRE) is a biosolids beneficial reuse system that uses a one-time application of biosolids in wide and shallow trenches covered with overburden, and planted with hybrid poplar cuttings. Years of research by Gary Felton, water quality specialist, and Jonathan Kays, on a gravel spoil in southern Maryland demonstrated minimal impacts on water quality and revealed how this beneficial reuse system is best applied on gravel and coal strip mines for reclamation. Case studies showing the applicability of DRE for coal strip mine reclamation will be discussed.
The University of Maryland Extension just released a new 48-page extension bulletin on best practices for deep row entrenchment of biosolids (EB453). This publication provides best management practices resulting from years of research by the University of Maryland on a private gravel spoil site in southern Maryland. Application of the technique to coal mine spoils is discussed.
Best practices Publication: