Articles by Martha Mintz


Interseeding is a Process, Not Just a Practice

Building experience is the critical first leg of the journey to interseeding, companion cropping and relay cropping.

When Loran Steinlage hears someone say, “I want to be where you are” when it comes to interseeding, he says it’s a sure sign that person is setting themselves up for failure. It takes patience and practice to set the groundwork. 

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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

Stepping Up: No-Till, Tile, Cover Crops and Now Organic

Dana, Ind., no-tiller Kelly Cheesewright is always game to take the next step to improve the function, productivity and sustainability of his farm.

What I’m doing isn’t for the faint of heart. I not only want to farm, I want to be profitable, take care of the soil, water and wildlife and make sure my children and grandchildren can keep farming in the future. Doing things the right way — not just the easiest or most profitable in the right here and right now — is what I want to achieve.

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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

Attention to Detail Unlocks Long-Term No-Till Success

It’s the little things that add up to success for this North Dakota no-till veteran.

THIS MAY SOUND crazy for a 72-year-old to say, but I can’t retire because I’m at the top of my game. My soil is the best it’s ever been. 

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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

Keeping on an Even, Reliable Keel with Decades of No-Till

A long running commitment to no-till, cover crops and constant learning make for smooth sailing on this Virginia farm.
We quite buying crop insurance 30 years ago. We kept paying premiums and paying premiums and never had yields low enough to qualify for payment. In fact, I haven’t had a crop failure since I started no-tilling more than 50 years ago.
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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

One Bold Move Leads to Decades of No-Till Success

Jumping aggressively into no-till and later cover crops created an efficient, productive system and flexibility for off-farm adventures.
I’M A BIT of an adventurer. In my 20s I ran triathlons, then I traveled the country as a wind surfer and for the last 15 years I’ve enjoyed getting way off the beaten path with my dirt bike. I’m certainly not afraid to try something different or think outside the box and that’s true in my farming operation, too.
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Building a Case for the Economic Benefits of Improving Soil Health

To help farmers make informed decisions, the Soil Health Partnership is gathering data on the financial impacts of conservation practices.
FOR THE PAST 7 years, the National Corn Growers Assn. and their partners have been working to increase the confident adoption of soil health management practices today and in the future through the Soil Health Partnership (SHP).
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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

Taking No-Till Diversity Beyond the Annual Cycle

Wildflowers, perennial grasses, intercropped cover crops and more have this Idaho farm leading the pack in crop diversity.
Keeping soil in place in the Palouse can be a real challenge, one we haven’t always been the best at meeting. The growing season is short, and slopes can be as steep as 40-plus degrees.
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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

Adding Diversity and Livestock for a Stronger Bottom Line — Now and in the Future

Playing the long game means this no-tiller’s profits may be more impressive when viewed by the decade rather than the year.
Farmers want to see a profit. They want to see it every year and with every crop. There’s nothing wrong with that exactly, but I want to consider long term potential benefits and compounding profits as much as short-term gain when weighing management strategies.
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What I've Learned from No-Tilling

Securing Stability Through Stacked Enterprises and Stockpiled Carbon

With an eye on a variable future, no-tiller Jesse Hall diversifies his rotations and income streams for lasting success.
Stability is the goal and what drives nearly every decision on our farm. It can come in many forms. I want stability in yields, stability in soil conditions and, ultimately, stability in our farm’s overall economic health.
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