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“My head is still swimming, as it was impossible to absorb everything presented over the last 3 days...” — Richard Rice, Philo, Ill.
In an 11-year experiment at the University of Tennessee’s Milan Experiment Station, John Bradley found the fuel costs of no-tilled corn amounted to $4.90 per acre less than conventional tillage. The long-time no-till researcher found corn yields were also higher with no-till.
For no-till corn success, he recommends equipping a no-till planter with plenty of weight, a sturdy toolbar, ¾- to 1-inch ripple coulters, heavy down-pressure springs and cast-iron press wheels.
Ray Brownfield has data to show landowners that no-till adds up to additional profits when compared with other tillage systems. The head of Capital Agricultural Property Services in Oakbrook, Ill., says operating costs for an Illinois farm averaged only $33 per acre for no-till vs. $55 per acre on comparable farms doing conventional tillage.
Machinery costs were $142 per acre for no-till while equipment costs for conventional tillage averaged $208 per acre, he says.