Testing and Treatment

Information on testing and treating water for agriculture, including interpreting analysis reports, the safe use of agricultural water, water from natural gas drilling, private water system management and tips for buying water treatment equipment.

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Flooding around your home and on the farm could be leading to issues you need to address. Image Credit: Jennifer Fetter
After the Flood – Recovery Considerations for Rural Pennsylvanians - Articles Articles

After the Flood – Recovery Considerations for Rural Pennsylvanians

Jennifer R Fetter, Leon Ressler, Andy Yencha

Parts of Pennsylvania were drenched with heavy rains and flooded streams recently. In addition to drying out wet basements, there are few important things that rural Pennsylvanian’s might want to pay special attention to. More
Water Requirements Under the Food Safety Modernization Act
Water Requirements Under the Food Safety Modernization Act - Webinars Webinars
Free
Dr. Luke LaBorde from the Penn State Department of Food Science discusses water quality as it relates to food safety. More
Results from Livestock Water Supply Testing in Pennsylvania
Results from Livestock Water Supply Testing in Pennsylvania - Webinars Webinars
Free
Bryan Swistock from Penn State discusses results of a research study on the quality of water supplies for livestock, especially dairy cows. More
Feed Management Effects on Watersheds
Feed Management Effects on Watersheds - Webinars Webinars
Free
This webinar highlights how properly balancing phosphorus levels in dairy and beef rations relates to and effects manure phosphorus excretion levels. More
Assessment of Energy Crops to Improve Water Quality
Assessment of Energy Crops to Improve Water Quality - Webinars Webinars
Free
According to the Chesapeake Bay Model, planting biomass crops like switchgrass and winter crops like winter rye and winter oilseeds can reduce nutrient pollution. More
Core Topic Briefs: Ground Water Model
Core Topic Briefs: Ground Water Model - Videos Videos
This video shows movements of water under the earth and how pollution might affect drinking water. (Modelo de Agua Subterranea) More
Are Roadside Springs Safe?
Are Roadside Springs Safe? - Videos Videos

Are Roadside Springs Safe?

Bryan Swistock, Susan Boser, Mark Madden, James Andrew Clark, Diane Oleson, M.S., Amy Galford, Gary William Micsky

Many people drink water from roadside springs in Pennsylvania. But recent research suggests that you should use caution when consuming spring water. More
Solving Water Problems
Solving Water Problems - Videos Videos
Most drinking water issues can be resolved by considering water treatment, pollution control, or alternative water sources. More
Where Does Your Drinking Water Come From?
Where Does Your Drinking Water Come From? - Videos Videos
Educational resources on proper management of private water systems including wells, springs, and cisterns. More
Private Water System Management
Private Water System Management - Articles Articles
Penn State recommendations. A guide for private water system owners throughout Pennsylvania More
Water Tests: What Do the Numbers Mean?
Water Tests: What Do the Numbers Mean? - Guides and Publications Guides and Publications

Water Tests: What Do the Numbers Mean?

Bryan Swistock, William Sharpe, Ph.D., James Andrew Clark

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Learn how and why to test water for chemicals, bacteria, and other pollutants. More
Proper Water Well Construction
Proper Water Well Construction - Articles Articles

Proper Water Well Construction

Bryan Swistock, William Sharpe, Ph.D.

Sanitary water well caps and a grout seal around the casing can prevent surface water contamination of water wells. More
Coliform Bacteria
Coliform Bacteria - Articles Articles

Coliform Bacteria

Bryan Swistock, William Sharpe, Ph.D.

This article describes what coliform bacteria are, where they come from and how to remove them from drinking water. More
Iron and Manganese in Private Water Systems Iron and Manganese in Private Water Systems - Articles

Iron and Manganese in Private Water Systems

Bryan Swistock, William Sharpe, Ph.D.

Iron and manganese cause stains and tastes in water. They can be removed with several treatment processes described in this article. More
Information Sources for Water Well Owners
Information Sources for Water Well Owners - Articles Articles
This article provides some online resources where water well owners can access information about their water well or regional groundwater resources. More
Hydrogen Sulfide (Rotten Egg Odor) in Water Wells Hydrogen Sulfide (Rotten Egg Odor) in Water Wells - Articles
Hydrogen sulfide is a gas that gives water a distinctive “rotten egg” odor. Various treatment options are discussed in this article. More
Rainwater Cisterns: Design, Construction, and Treatment
Rainwater Cisterns: Design, Construction, and Treatment - Articles Articles
Roof-catchment cisterns are systems used to collect and store rainwater for household and other uses. More
Shock Chlorination of Wells and Springs
Shock Chlorination of Wells and Springs - Articles Articles

Shock Chlorination of Wells and Springs

Bryan Swistock, William Sharpe, Ph.D.

Shock chlorination can be used to disinfect water supplies that have been contaminated as a result of a contamination incident. More
Common Water Test Parameters Related to Natural Gas Drilling
Common Water Test Parameters Related to Natural Gas Drilling - Articles Articles
Water test reports of water near gas drilling activity generally have these common parameters. More
Interpreting Irrigation Water Tests
Interpreting Irrigation Water Tests - Articles Articles
Basic interpretation of how various water quality parameters can influence plant growth during irrigation. More
Chain of Custody Water Testing
Chain of Custody Water Testing - Articles Articles
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has a laboratory accreditation program for water testing labs to ensure data accuracy. More
Greenhouse and nursery for vegetables and ornamentals at the Southeast Agricultural Research & Extension Center in Landisville, PA
A Water Quality Toolkit for Greenhouse and Nursery Production - Articles Articles
Water quality plays a critical role in determining successful production of nursery and greenhouse crops, and should be considered in fertilization management and disease control. More
A small roadside spring located along a state forest road in northcentral Pennsylvania.
Roadside Springs - Articles Articles

Roadside Springs

Bryan Swistock, Susan Boser, Mark Madden, Diane Oleson, M.S., Amy Galford, Gary William Micsky, James Andrew Clark

This article discusses a research study on the water quality and use of numerous roadside springs across Pennsylvania. More
Private Water Systems FAQs
Private Water Systems FAQs - Articles Articles
Frequently asked questions about private wells, cisterns and springs. More
How to Interpret a Water Analysis Report
How to Interpret a Water Analysis Report - Articles Articles
This article outlines some of the major parameters you may see on the analysis and assists you in understanding the numbers on a water test report. More
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