Soil Health

The Benefits Of No-Till Farming

The winning entry from a South Carolina high school senior in the Phoenix Rotary Equipment Ltd. conservation tillage essay contest explains how no-till has helped the family boost yields while reducing costs and protecting the soil.
Though only 17 years of age, I consider myself an experienced farmer. I have worked alongside my father on our family’s farm since I was a small child, learning the skills of agriculture and developing a desire to make farming my own life’s work. Living on a farm that has belonged to and supported our family for generations, I am acutely aware of how drastically farming techniques have changed over the years.
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No-Till Online

Conservation Tillage A Worldwide Thing

Growers on three continents compare notes on their challenges, methods and equipment for best results.
Thanks to the magic of computers, no-tillers and would-be no-tillers from the far corners of the Earth can conveniently get together. That’s what happened recently, when growers from Scotland, England, New Zealand and the U.S. met at Farmers Forum, No-Till Farmer’s online message board. Here’s how they found common ground.
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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: No-Till Is Cornerstone To Smarter Farming

Process sets off a chain of innovations for this Indiana farm family.
I tell my neighbors that I don’t want to farm anymore. I just want to farm smarter. That philosophy was the reason we went with no-till in 1986, and it’s the driving force behind other steps that we’ve taken to make farming more efficient and profitable.
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Tiling Called An Affordable Way To Increase No-Till Yields, Profits

Tile plow said to allow big returns on investment through improved soils.
“Improved drainage may be needed on many soils to obtain the best yields from a no-till system. Yields under no-till are often affected by poor drainage, more so than those under conventional tillage,” according to a study by soil scientists at Ohio State University.
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Eyeballing Organic Matter

Simple tests can help you see the improvements in organic matter due to no-tilling.
You can eyeball how much organic matter there is in your soil, says Jill Clapperton, a Canadian soil microbiologist at the Lethbridge Research Centre in Lethbridge, Alberta. Take a sample of the soil in an old can, mix it with water and shake well.
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Looking Down On Soil Life

What goes on in the top 2 inches of your no-tilled soil is especially important after the growing season.
When you walk across a no-till field, Jill Clapperton says you’re walking on the rooftop of a bustling community. No-tilled soils teem with life, and with the right management techniques, you can use these busy organisms to your benefit, says the the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada soil biologist stationed at the Lethbridge Research Centre in Lethbridge, Alberta.
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Search Underground For Higher No-Till Profits

Managing what’s found below the ground is a key to boosting your above-ground profits.
To maximize above-ground profits, Ed Winkle maintains that no-tillers must be attuned to the basics of what’s happening under the ground. The certified crop adviser with HyMark Consulting in Blanchester, Ohio, says a proper balance of oxygen, hydrogen and carbon is critical to harvesting top no-till yields.
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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: No-Till To Stop Erosion Before It Starts!

With faith that no-till is totally compatible with Mother Nature, this Iowan believes it represents farming’s future both economically and environmentally.
During my 13 years in the Air Force after graduating from Iowa State University in 1956, a lot of things changed. In the military, I was part of a two-man team that flew the experimental SR-71, which became the world’s fastest airplane. It still holds speed records of more than 2,000 miles per hour.
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