Conservation tillage is the only option for Bill Darrington to farm the rolling hills of western Iowa, to maintain soil structure and maximize nutrient uptake in the soil. Since 1987, he’s evolved from no-till and strip-till to a hybrid of the two farming practices. This includes deep-banded, multi-level placement of fertilizer during a spring strip-till pass and multiple foliar applications, along with timed insecticide and herbicide applications to provide crops with a robust nutrient package.
Darrington considers his management approach as “biologically aware” and proactively looks for the most productive, farm-friendly fertilizers to keep his soils healthy and organically active. Deep-banding nutrients is a valuable component to strip-till, but farmers need to also understand what they are applying and where to avoid potential long- term damage to soil biology.
During the opening general session of the 2015 conference Darrington will share the evolution of his strip-till system to include fertility management practices that have helped him improve yields and boost soil health.
Stay tuned for more speaker announcements and updates on the 2nd annual National Strip-Tillage Conference. We'll see you in Iowa City!