In Search of Bountiful Corn Yields with No-Till and Strip Intercropping

On 500 acres, Matt Sheafer’s Indiana farm is a virtual laboratory of experiments with seeding and maturity rates, nutrient management and crop orientations.

Pictured Above: EXPERIMENTAL TYPES. Matt and Anne Sheafer own 500 acres of crop, forest and CRP land in northwest Indiana. Matt thrives on experimenting with most of his crops, including setting up trials for seeding and maturity rates, row spacings, nutrient and treatment inputs and crop orientations.

Most farmers like to experiment — whether it’s with seed varieties, equipment setups, nutrient management or other variables — but few no-tillers can say that all of their acres are in some form of an experiment during any one growing season. 

Matt Sheafer, who’s been no-tilling for 25 years, experiments because he wants to know what his maximum yields can be from a “smaller” farm operation.

Sheafer, a 7th generation farmer, grew up in western Ohio on a grain and livestock farm. After graduating from Purdue University, he eventually found himself in Crown Point, Ind., as an owner of a diesel fuel injection service shop and farming his in-laws’ 150 acres. By his own admission, farming was Sheafer’s “weekend warrior thing,” but his goal had always been to farm full time.

He bought about 320 acres of land outside San Pierre, Ind., in 2003, which eventually expanded into what is now 500 acres of crop, forest and CRP ground. Crops account for 420 acres. After selling the diesel service business in 2014, farming was finally Sheafer’s full-time vocation.


To view the content, please subscribe or login.
 Premium content is for our Digital-only and Premium subscribers. A Print-only subscription doesn't qualify. Please purchase/upgrade a subscription with the Digital product to get access to all No-Till Farmer content and archives online. Learn more about the different versions and what is included.

Mark mcneely1

Mark McNeely

Mark McNeely is the former managing editor of No-Till Farmer and Conservation Tillage Guide magazines. His previous experience includes 25 years in industrial engine journalism and marketing. Mark holds an M.A. in journalism from the University of Wisconsin.

Top Articles

Current Issue


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.

Subscribe Now

View More

Must Read Free Eguides

Download these helpful knowledge building tools

View More
Top Directory Listings