Items Tagged with 'earthworms'



Big Roots from Ryegrass Build ‘Highways’ in the Soil

Ralph Upton Jr. shares how annual ryegrass busted the plow pan, boosted soil organic matter and improved corn yields above the county average.
We've got two different soils on our farm in Springerton, Ill.: What we call hill ground, and then bottom ground. The hill ground has got plenty of problems, and the bottom ground — if you don’t have too many water problems — will do a real good job of growing crops.
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Recycling Nutrients and Improving Soil Health with Earthworms

Fostering the natural synergies between plants, soil and earthworms can pay dividends for growers in healthier crops and higher yields.
The presence of earthworms in the soil is widely understood to be a positive sign. From aerating the soil, to adding carbon and other nutrients, to incubating beneficial biology, earthworms provide a range of benefits that can have profound impact on agricultural soils.
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Strip-Till Conversion Mellows Tough U.K. Soils

Turning to a modified strip-till setup that includes cover crops, Alex Shutes is saving time and money and seeing improved soil conditions with little or no yield drag.
A few years ago as circumstances changed on his farm, Alex Shutes faced the task of raising several spring and winter crops in a tillage-intensive system as a one-man operation. It seemed like a daunting task.
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‘Soil Livestock’ Open the Tap to Increasing No-Till Production

Healthier microbial communities are key for no-tillers to utilize large pools of untapped nutrients underground and increase production without hiking input costs.
NUTRIENT-BASED yield theories have served agriculture for more than 150 years, but the problem, some soil scientists say, is those models were created without any concept of soil biology.
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What are you currently doing, or have you done, to help break down residue more effectively ahead of no-tilling spring crops?

“In 20-inch rows I added narrow-profile Yetter SharkTooth row cleaners this year and next year I plan to add Precision Planting’s CleanSweep technology to the row cleaners to adjust them on the go and not move as much soil and more of just the residue.
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Saved Sediment, Covers, Worms Bring No-Till ‘Gold’ to the Surface

Dwight Clary says seeding covers have revved up his Ohio farm by suppressing weeds, taking up nutrients and building organic matter.
An interest in conservation hit Dwight Clary early in life. When he was 13 years old, one of his 4H projects won a County Conservation Award. The prize? A week at Conservation Camp. That was when he learned about a new practice called “no-till.”
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NNTC16 Audio Presentations

Enabling No-Till Yields to Increase with Drainage, Earthworms - Doral Kemper - NNTC 2016 Presentation - MP3 Download


In no-till systems, earthworms enjoy a synergistic relationship with corn roots. The earthworms subsist on decaying residue of the roots and the roots extend further when they can find earthworm burrows to go through. In this presentation, Doral Kemper discusses how this relationship is enhanced when tile drainage prevents the water table from rising and eliminating aerated portions of the soil the worms need to survive and grow. The retired soil researcher from USDA-ARS shares how drainage and earthworms aid in the extension of roots, which enables crops to access more water in the late — and often dry — portions of the growing season when they hit the critical grain-filling stage. Kemper also explains how soil drainage to extend earthworm and root activity makes it one of the farmer’s best investments.


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