Soil Health

Dare to Compare

This farmer matches his conversation system to varying soil types
Tim Manchester was nonchalantly looking over yield maps when the clusters of dots representing yields glowed as brightly as a K-Mart blue light special.
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Our Soil, Our Life

No-tilling helps this Wisconsin couple improve soil quality and preserve it for future generations.
While most Corn Belt no-tillers grow only corn and soybeans, Charlie Hammer prefers a three-way rotation. The operator of Hammer & Kavazanjian Farms with his wife Nancy Kavazanjian at Beaver Dam, Wis., prefers a no-till rotation evenly split between corn, soybeans and wheat in the farm’s 2,300-acre operation.
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Compaction Can Threaten Unsuspecting No-Tillers

Just because you’re no-tilling doesn’t mean a hardpan can’t undermine all your cropping efforts from the roots up.
No-tillers know the threat that compaction poses to their crops. And although no-tilling minimizes the risk of compaction, no-tillers might not understand how a hardpan might still sneak into their fields.
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Some of Your Friends Live Underground

Earthworms can accomplish a lot in undisturbed fields, and no-tillers are in perfect position to capitalize, says this speaker at the 2006 National No-Tillage Conference.
Field scouting usually happens in broad daylight. But to scout for one indicator of the vitality of your no-till fields, it’s best to step out after dark, or dusk at earliest. Then look for earthworms.
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No-Till’s A No-Brainer

With a few critical management changes, no-till has been the best investment ever made in this farming operation.
Even with a cold and wet spring in 2004, Tim Goodenough readily saw the many benefits of no-tilling with corn yielding as high as 265 bushels and soybeans reaching 67 bushels per acre.
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Take the Next Step With Mature No-Till Fields

Long-term no-tillers earn rewards from improved soils, but they also face new questions as they try to make the most of their evolving fields.
Dan Gillespie wonders if long-time no-tillers are taking full advantage of the improvements in their soils. Gillespie, a continuous no-tiller in Meadow Grove, Neb., for the past 15 years, is putting his own soils to the test and sharing his answers.
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