About the School of Plant, Environmental, and Soil Sciences


The School of Plant, Environmental, and Soil Sciences (SPESS) offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs in plant, environmental, and soil sciences. These programs provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to pursue careers in academia, industry, government, or non-profit organizations.

We offer undergraduate degree programs in Plant and Soil Systems and Environmental Management Systems and graduate degree programs in Agronomy and Horticulture. In the spirit of the land-grant university system, the school offers unique opportunities for students to gain valuable work experience by working with our diversified research faculty on projects that cover a broad range of plant, environmental and soils topics.

Our extension faculty, with specializations in agronomy, soil, horticulture, and weed science, work with parish extension agents to deliver the latest science-based information to Louisiana citizens.

David Picha Headshot


Dr. David Picha
Professor and Director
125A J. C. Miller Hall
Baton Rouge, LA 70803
Phone: 225-578-1032
Email: DPicha@agcenter.lsu.edu



Soil Testing and Plant Analysis Lab

The Soil Testing and Plant Analysis Laboratory (STPAL) offers a variety of soil, plant tissue, and water tests to the general public and research community. With integrated effort from both research and extension agronomists, STPAL is the only laboratory that incorporates the latest Louisiana-specific soil fertility research in its recommendation system to help farmers to meet today's challenges in agricultural production. The laboratory is located at Madison B. Sturgis Hall in Room 126. Please visit lsuagcenter.com/stpal or contact us via email at stpal@agcenter.lsu.edu.

Hill Farm on Campus

The Horticulture Hill Farm Teaching Facility and University Gardens is located on the LSU main campus in Baton Rouge, LA. This research and teaching facility  includes classroom building with two labs and an outdoor hands-on teaching space under cover of the “pole barn.” The facility also houses a small demonstration orchard for teaching fruit production, field space for teaching vegetable production and organic gardening, a can yard for teaching nursery crops, a large shade house and a greenhouse for teaching greenhouse crop and hydroponic vegetable production, and box beds for demonstrating organic herb and vegetable gardening. The Hill Farm is currently managed by Dr. Edward Bush. For information regarding using the Hill Farm Teaching Facility, please email him at ebush@agcenter.lsu.edu.

LSU AgCenter Forage Testing Lab

The LSU AgCenter Forage Testing Lab serves forage growers, livestock producers, and various LSU AgCenter Forage programs through timely and accurate nutritional value analysis of forage samples.

student in vegetable garden 

Learn more about the opportunities and degree programs offered by the LSU College of Agriculture.

LSU College of Agriculture



UndeRgraduate Program

Master's program

phd program



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