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The “Grandfather” of Strip-Till Talks Transition and Technique

After more than 30 years of strip-till evolution, Hudson, Ill., farmer Rich Follmer reflects on building his first strip-till toolbar, why he started building berms in the fall and the future of the practice.

Rich Follmer didn’t set out to become a businessman. In the 1980s, the corn and soybean farmer from central Illinois — considered by many to be the grandfather of strip-till — designed and built a system that would allow him to till the ground and plant soybeans simultaneously. 

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Putting Numbers Behind Nutrient Management Principles

Detailed data-crunching helps South Dakota strip-tillers Barry and Eli Little improve soil health, reduce inputs and gain control of livestock feeding options.

In the pursuit of higher soil organic matter levels in their soils, Barry and Eli Little, a father-and-son team farming in Castlewood, S.D., are aggressively adopting regenerative practices.

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Defining the Benefits of Soil Health with Dollar-Saving Data

In principal, the benefits of reducing tillage and introducing cover crops seems intuitive. But, for farmers like Osage, Iowa, strip-tiller Wayne Fredericks, it’s important to textualize these benefits with research, data and his checkbook. 

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Prospering from a Green and Growing Approach on Every Acre

Precise placement, intensive soil-sampling and cover crop experiments help cut New York strip-tiller Donn Branton’s fertilizer rates in half and significantly boost corn yields over 40-year career.

Forty years ago, Donn Branton was raising 100-bushel corn, broadcast applying 120-130 pounds per-acre of nitrogen (N) in the process and plowing his fields every year. Today, there’s not a plow to be found on the 1,700-acre LeRoy, N.Y., operation he farms with his son, Chad, and they average 189 bushels of corn on about 0.75 pounds of applied N per dry bushel.

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Clearing a Path for a Cohesive Cropping Strategy

For Mount Pulaski, Ill., strip-tiller Jeff Martin, strip-till serves as a reliable residue management tool and protective measure to retain valuable soil.

When Jeff Martin added strip-tilled corn his 8,000-acre operation in the early 1990s, one of the motivations was to clear a path for his no-tilled soybeans. 

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Crunching the Numbers on Custom Strip-Till

Kentland, Ind., farmer Jesse Stoller breaks down the costs of equipment ownership vs. the benefits of custom strip-tilling.
For farmers curious about the benefits of reducing their tillage practices, custom strip-till can be an efficient and affordable entry point. For farmers already building strips every year, it can be a lucrative business opportunity. 
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Synergizing Soil Health, Equipment & Technology

No-till, strip-till and cover crops help Cornwallis Farms in Nova Scotia stay competitive with a diversified 1,800-acre operation.
When your family has been farming some of the same ground for more than 255 years, there have been many changes. Yet some of the most meaningful and innovative changes have taken place over the past 25 years as Brian Newcombe and his brother Craig moved to no-till and strip-till at Cornwallis Farms in Port Williams, Nova Scotia.
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Redefining the Dollars & Sense Approach to Strip-Tilling of the Future

From on- and off-farm revenue diversification, equipment sharing and a renewed reliance on data-driven decision making, the next generation operation will require an entrepreneurial mentality.
When it comes to the evolution of farming, it’s been said that the pace of change has never been so fast and change will never be this slow again. The pairing of the rapid advancement of ag technology with the generational goals of growers is creating economic opportunities along with transitional challenges.
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