Soil Health U

Soil Health U 2019

Jan. 23-24, Tony's Pizza Event Center, Salina, KS

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Kent Vlieger, the State Soil Health Specialist for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Huron, South Dakota, answers a few questions about the benefits of using a no-till and cover crop system to improve soil health and water quality while reducing erosion.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service has completed and published updates to its set of National Conservation Practice Standards, which include 58 standards that have been updated or revised since August. The 2018 farm bill required NRCS to review all 169 …

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Michael Thompson didn’t like cattle when he grew up on his family’s farm. In fact, he couldn’t stand them. But he’s changed his tune in recent years as they’ve become an integral part of improving his soil health.Thompson spoke at High Plains Journal’s Soil Health U in January 2020 at Salina…

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American Farmland Trust, the organization that for 40 years has been saving the land that sustains us and advancing the principles of regenerative agriculture has launched online access to the methods, tools, and training resources it used in developing case studies featuring soil health suc…

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USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service Plant Materials Centers have a long and successful history of selecting and releasing conservation plants to support soil stabilization, improve pollinator and wildlife habitat, provide livestock forage, and increase the diversity in plantings.

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If knowledge is king, then data is the key advisor. Mitchell Hora spoke at High Plains Journal’s Soil Health U event, held Jan. 22 to 23 in Salina, Kansas, about using soil health data to guide every decision on the farm from fertility to water use.

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Ancient farmers began domesticating wild annual plants approximately 10,000 years ago. Eventually, farmers became dependent upon annual grain crops, and according to Brandon Schlautman of The Land Institute, diverse natural ecosystems were inadvertently converted to monoculture annual agro-e…

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture released the final rule for its Conservation Stewardship Program. The rule makes updates to the popular conservation program as directed by the 2018 farm bill and integrates feedback from agricultural producers and others.

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A well-managed pasture plan can boost profits for a cattle producer. Dale Strickler, from Green Cover Seed, Bladen, Nebraska, presented Maximizing Pasture Production and Profit at the recent Cattle U and Trade Show, an event sponsored by High Plains Journal. He touched on topics such as graz…

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Locus Agricultural Solutions has a product and a program for you.The product is Rhizolizer, a patented fermented probiotic soil amendment product. It incorporates two microorganisms to increase root masses, improve yields and provide better nitrogen uptake to plants through the roots. The pr…

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Growing up on a farm, I noticed that my dad had always been interested in conservation. He installed terraces, grass waterways and ponds on our Iowa hills and practiced crop rotation. It was my first glimpse of learning about leaving the land better than you started with.

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The topics of carbon and the environment have not always been met with positive responses from the agriculture community. However, there is no dispute carbon plays a major role in soil health, and finding ways to add more carbon should be a nonpartisan issue.Dale Strickler, agronomist at Gre…

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Dirt is what you sweep under the cabin rug, but soil is a living ecosystem that sustains plants, animals, and humans. Soils just don’t happen. Soil is formed from the physical and chemical weathering of rocks.  It is made up mainly of mineral particles, organic materials, air, water, and liv…

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Iowa Learning Farms, in partnership with the Iowa Nutrient Research Center and Conservation Learning Group, is hosting a free virtual soil health field day on June 18 at 1 p.m.Participants will dig into soil health with Marshall McDaniel, assistant professor in soil-plant interactions at Iow…

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Incorporating cover crops with tillage reportedly results in increased cover crop decomposition rates and increased mineralization of nutrients from cover crop biomass. Multiple studies have reported mixed results for corn-soybean grain yields when planted after cover crops.

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As interest and integration of cover crops accelerate, the industry has been challenged in its ability to provide easy to access, comprehensive information. Recently, cover crop application company GO SEED developed the Cover Crop Information Map to provide a free, centralized platform for k…

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In the wettest year on record for South Dakota, half the cropland in the state that was planted used a cropping system without tillage. That system, no-till farming, has been the predominant cropping system on South Dakota cropland in recent years, but this is the first year the practice was…

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While it’s not a new concept, an increasingly popular practice is to plant cash crops directly into living cover crops. The science behind it is sound—allowing producers to push the benefits of their cover crops to the max and take advantage of things like added organic matter and nutrient release.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced April 28 a $15 million investment to help support the adoption of innovative conservation approaches on agricultural lands. USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is accepting proposals through June 29 for national Conservation Innovation G…

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Pigweed, also known as Palmer Amaranth, is a pesky pain to passels of farmers.But that weed and others are just part of the game to Dale Strickler, agronomist for Green Cover Seed, of Bladen, Nebraska. He spoke at Soil Health U, hosted by High Plains Journal, Jan. 22 and 23, in Salina, Kansas.

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The CS Ranch in Colfax County, New Mexico, will become an outdoor classroom to teach adaptive stewardship grazing and soil health-focused management practices, June 1 to 3, the Soil Health Academy. Thanks to a contribution from the McDonald's Corporation, multiple scholarships are also avail…

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The southern High Plains of the United States have low annual rainfall. When it does rain, though, intense storms can cause severe soil erosion. Strong winds also strip away valuable topsoil.

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Knopf Farms is one of three new sites in the Soil Health Partnership network, through a partnership with the National Wheat Foundation, that is evaluating the impacts of diversified crop rotation and how wheat can benefit the soil and other environmental indicators.

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Cover crops continue to grow in popularity in Iowa due to their many benefits, reduced soil erosion, weed suppression potential, reduced nitrogen and phosphorus loads entering water bodies, and increased soil organic matter. Iowa Learning Farms and the United States Department of Agriculture…

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A wholesale shift to regenerative agriculture is soon to become the primary choice for survival, Tom Cannon told audiences at Soil Health U, Jan. 22 and 23, in Salina, Kansas. The farmer and manager of Goodson Ranch, near Blackwell, in north-central Oklahoma, warned of a potential extinction…

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It’s been said that America has the most plentiful, safe and nutritious food supply in the world. In 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service reported that 89.9% of U.S. households were food secure throughout the year, with 11.1% of households reporting some food …

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Shifting to farming with nature, rather than against it, is on a global campaign, and the proof is in the testaments of international visitors to the U.S. Tom and Cassi Robinson, of Hoyleton, Australia, and Laurent Lorre, who farms near Janville, some 50 miles south of Paris, France, attende…

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Deciding to work with nature instead of against it has made a huge difference to Darin Williams. The farmer and his wife, Nancy, from Coffey County in southeast Kansas embraced a return to natural systems agriculture in 2010. The couple cut their workload, time on the tractor, input costs, f…

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Officials at Eastern Iowa Airport in Cedar Rapids partnered with USDA to improve soil health and protect water quality on the airport’s 2,000 cropland acres. 

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Soil Health U, held Jan. 22 to 23 in Salina, Kansas, did not disappoint when it came to panels aimed at explaining techniques, personal experiences and advice pertaining to regenerative agriculture. The event, in its third year and sponsored by High Plains Journal, held three separate panels…