Articles by Ron Ross

What I've Learned from No-Tilling: After Nearly 25 Years, Improvements Still Keep Coming

An open mind welcomes a lot of ideas that, with a little tweaking, can deliver even more success to your fields.
Talk to 10 no-tillers and you’ll probably hear 10 slightly different viewpoints on why it pays to quit disturbing and start building the soil. At Sheridan Farms, we’ve got our list, too. We’ve been able to drop from five marketed crops to two or three without any loss in productivity or farm income.
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A Practical Guide To Adjuvants Answers The Basic Questions

There are hundreds of adjuvant products on the market, but with some fundamental knowledge you can sift through them comfortably.
There are at least 10 ways adjuvants can make your post-emergence herbicide work harder — and literally hundreds of adjuvant products to choose from. Here’s a look at what’s causing this proliferation and how you can be sure you’re treating your crops right.
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Custom Planters Offer Advice And Money-Making No-Till Ideas

Early adoption of no-till led to requests for assistance and, eventually, a business that supplements their own farming.
Good business sense plus compassion for their fellow no-till farmers have partnered to create a scattering of custom no-till planting and/or equipment rental enterprises. Here are solid ideas from five entrepreneurs to think about, whether you’re a veteran or novice no-tiller.
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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: A Practical Approach To No-Tilling Helps Lead Newcomers To Benefits

NRCS representative takes a realistic approach to winning converts and proving the long-term advantages of moving away from conventional tillage.
With the recent focus on the benefits of cover crops, it is ironic that research plots evaluating corn planted into hairy vetch sparked my initial interest in no-till. Those first impressions were made when I was a student at Western Kentucky University nearly 25 years ago.
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Corn Seed Options Boom for No-Till

It’s no longer a guessing game, but rather a matter of sorting through all the information to find seed that fits your no-till field conditions and practices.
There have never been more corn hybrid selections and protections on the market to help meet the needs of no-tillers. We’ve moved a long way from the hybrid guessing game no-tillers were in just a few short years ago.
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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: Attitude Is The Most Important Prerequisite For No-Till Success

Environmental issues including air quality with dust and diesel fuel emissions are driving the move to less tillage in California.
California has long been one of the most productive agricultural areas of the world. Partly for that reason, growers there are often understandably reluctant to try new farming methods, especially when rising fuel and labor costs and market competition are shrinking profit margins.
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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: Get Involved With Continuous No-Till

These two no-till veterans recommend it to build organic matter and improve soil health while relying on precision ag to make it work.
Back in 1996, we made a commitment to farm more land without hiring any full-time labor. Thanks to a shift to continuous no-till, precision farming and more efficient equipment, we’ve surpassed our goals.
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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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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: Finding No-Till’s Weakest Link Is Essential

Having just one problem in a no-till system is enough to cause serious problems and it can happen at any time — even after 20 years of no-tilling.
When you think about being directly involved with saving a natural resource as significant as the Chesapeake Bay, it’s hard not to get excited. That noble thought might be enough reason all by itself to really hard sell continuous no-till systems, including cover crops and rotations. And when you can see clearly that no-till makes farming more profitable — in addition to the big-picture environmental equation — you can start to sense that we’re onto something, as they say, that’s really big.
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