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“If you think ‘I'm just a farmer, I'm just a logger, I'm just a cattleman,’ you tend to think too myopically about what you're managing. When you step back, you’re managing a whole blend of resources for the most synergy, the best profit and the best long-term sustainability.” Dick Wittman, no-tiller in Lapwai, Idaho

Welcome to the 70th episode of the No-Till Farmer “Influencers and Innovators” podcast series. Since the beginning of this series in 2019, dozens of No-Till Influencers and Innovators have shared their strategies for success in their own words. 

This episode spotlights Idaho no-tiller Dick Wittman. Wittman is carrying on — and passing on — a tradition of conservation with his 20,000 acre operation, half of which is cropland. 

As a fourth-generation farmer, Wittman began experimenting with no-till in the 1980s to reduce tillage and stop erosion. Today, an estimated 75% of the Palouse is no-tilled, thanks in part to Wittman’s dedication. He helped found the influential Pacific Northwest Direct Seed Association, which lobbied for federal conservation policies and programs that supported practices like no-till. 

In this episode of the No-Till Farmer Influencers & Innovators podcast, Frank Lessiter talks with Wittman about his transition to no-till, his resource management mindset and how Wittman is positioning the next generation of farmers in his family for success. 

Check out our podcast archive featuring dozens of other conversations with no-till influencers and innovators from around the world. This invaluable knowledge is available for free on our website or wherever you get your podcasts. 

P.S. There’s lots more great no-till stories and history in Frank Lessiter’s new book, From Maverick to Mainstream: A History of No-Till Farming. Check it out here.

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