Urban Soils


Mhuireach, G.A., Van Den Wymelenberg, K.G., and Langellotto, G.A. 2023. Garden soil bacterial transiently colonize gardeners’ skin after direct soil contact. Urban Agriculture and Regional Food Systems 8(1): 1-22. https://doi.org/10.1002/uar2.20035

Nelson, M.Mhuireach, G., & Langellotto, G. A. (2022). Excess fertility in residential-scale urban agriculture soils in two western oregon cities, USAUrban Agriculture & Regional Food Systems7(1), 20027. https://doi.org/10.1002/uar2.20027


Our Urban Soils work includes basic studies of garden soils, as well as studies of garden soil microbiomes. The read more about our garden soils work, please visit recent posts that have been tagged as ‘garden soils’ posts.

Gwynne Mhuireach completed her USDA NIFA funded post-doctoral work, looking at the microbiome in garden soils, and whether soil microbes influence gardeners’ skin microbiome, as a consequence of time spent gardening. Gwynne continues to collaborate with the Garden Ecology Lab on projects focused on building-integrated agriculture.

Mykl Nelson crafted and successfully defended a Master’s of Science thesis project for this lab in May, 2018. Over the summer of 2017, he conducted a survey of the chemical, physical, and biological properties of garden soils in Corvallis and Portland.  He focused on soils used for vegetable production and compared results between raised beds and in-ground beds.

After a brief summer hiatus, Mykl is once again an active member of the Garden Ecology Lab. His new role is as an Instructor of Urban Agriculture. He teaches Introduction to Urban Agriculture (HORT 283) and Case Studies in Urban Agriculture (HORT 483), which are two core courses in OSU’s Urban Agriculture Certificate Program.