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I don't know everything when it comes to farming. Admitting that fact, and seeking out the knowledge of others has helped our farm move forward at a steady pace over the years.
My father was the source of that way of thinking. He always seemed to be a step ahead of everyone. He attended college in the early 1940s when most of his contemporaries weren’t even finishing high school. When he returned to the farm he was among the first to employ a crop consultant, which wasn’t really a thing at the time.
He reached out to Joseph Clayton, a wheat disease researcher at Michigan State and had him come scout our wheat, advising us what to do and when.
As a result, my dad produced phenomenal wheat. Having crop consultants is common now, and it’s a practice I continue to lean heavily on in our current operation. I don’t have the time or the knowledge to scout my fields. Instead, I have someone who lives and breathes crop scouting out in my fields frequently, and my crops are all the better for it.
NAME: David Eickholt
FARM: Eickholt Seed Farms
LOCATION: Chesaning, Michigan
YEARS NO-TILLING: 30
CROPS: Soybeans, wheat and corn
But not all the knowledge comes from outside the family. We’ve been farming this piece of central Michigan for more than 100 years. My father excelled at raising seed wheat. Since he knew farming, I went to school to become a mechanic. He…