ek_1_34-3.jpg

What I've Learned From No-Tilling: Bending Equipment, Argonomics To Fit His Needs Pays

South Dakota no-tiller Terry Huss modifies new equipment to fit his dry conditions and goes against the trend by growing wheat with corn and soybeans.

Check The Specs...

NAME: Terry Huss

LOCATION: Faulkton, S.D.

YEARS NO-TILLING: 30

ACRES NO-TILLED: 6,000

CROPS NO-TILLED: Corn, soybeans, wheat

It doesn’t seem possible that I’ve been no-tilling for 30 years. I don’t know if you would call me a pioneer, but no-till was almost unheard of in north central South Dakota in 1979.

We were predominantly a wheat-growing area, trying to stretch our average 18 inches of precipitation over a short-season crop. I went through a steep no-till learning curve, with limited equipment and few crop protection chemicals.

What a difference today. No-till has grown here to where it’s the norm, rather than an exception. We have a choice of precision no-till planters and drills from several major manufacturers. New seed genetics and broad-spectrum pest control products give season-long protection.

As a result, no-till soybean and corn rotations have replaced a lot of wheat-fallow acres. In recent years, however, a lot of us have shifted back to wheat because we’ve learned how to get higher, more profitable yields. And, when I dropped out of wheat, I saw corn yields decline.

A more diverse rotation improves soil quality and water retention. And wheat stubble is a perfect place to no-till corn.

You are probably not going to save money in all aspects of your operation by no-tilling. At least I don’t. No-till can be more expensive in some cases. Your gain comes through higher yields.

For example, I have gradually increased plant populations to around 32,000 in the 20-inch rows…

To view the full article, please subscribe or login.
 Premium content is for our Digital and Premium subscribers. Please purchase a subscription to get access to all No-Till Farmer content and archives.
Ross_ron

Ron Ross

Top Articles

Current Issue

NTF_July_0718_198w.jpg

No-Till Farmer

Get full access NOW to the most comprehensive, powerful and easy-to-use online resource for no-tillage practices. Just one good idea will pay for your subscription hundreds of times over.

View More

Must Read Free Eguides

Download these helpful knowledge building tools

View More
Top Directory Listings