Articles by Mark Watson

No-Till Notes

10 Tips for Successful No-Till Production: No. 7

Focusing on rotations with high-residue crops will do the best job adding carbon into low organic-matter soils.
We found out this spring how important continually adding carbon into our soil is here in western Nebraska. With our somewhat low organic-matter content soil we really need to continually grow high-residue crops a high percentage of the time to keep the soil in good condition.
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No-Till Notes

10 Tips for Successful No-Till Production: No. 4 and 5

Adding field peas prior to wheat adds diversity to no-till rotation, which breaks up weed and disease cycles and reduces long-term fallow.
I’ve been discussing 10 tips for successful no-till crop production and thus far I’ve covered choosing a good crop rotation, winter wheat as the most important crop for supplying a consistent amount of residue to make the rest of the crop rotation function, and utilizing a stripper head to manage this residue.
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No-Till Notes

10 Tips for Successful No-Till Production: No. 2 and 3

Nurturing a productive winter wheat crop, and using a stripper header to process residue, can help protect no-tilled fields and profits.
Recently I started off my 10 tips to successful no-till crop production with a discussion on crop rotations. I feel this is the most important consideration on your farm. Designing a crop rotation f will affect your bottom line, weed and disease cycles, and your farm’s performance well into the future. Take plenty of time each year and assess your rotation and improvements you can make in designing your rotation.
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No-Till Notes

Power of Legumes, Part 4

Biological tests on Mark Watson’s Alliance, Neb., farm show legumes can bring some ‘pop’ to microbial biomass levels in no-tilled soils.
Recently, I visited about the results of the biological tests we ran on our winter-wheat stubble, which showed very low microbial activity.
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