Soil Health

View the secret underground world of soil livestock —including beneficial bacteria, mycorrhizal fungi and earthworms — that are essential to building healthy soils and reducing your cost of production.

ARTICLES

Strip-Tilling Cover Crops into Poorer Soils Results in Increased Yields

For more than 2 decades, Alabama strip-tiller Mitch Lazenby has utilized heavy cover cropping to keep soils cool, retain moisture and boost yields 10-20% on his 2,000-acre operation.
Saying that summers in Alabama are hot is an understatement. A better description is ‘sweltering’, ‘scorching’ and ‘blistering.’ So, finding a way to keep soils cool and retain moisture is critical to the success of any crop grown in the Heart of Dixie.
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[Podcast] Putting a Microscope on Biological Benefits in a Strip-Till System Part 2

In this episode of the <em>Strip-Till Farmer</em> podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we continue our conversation with Streator, Ill., strip-tiller Larry Tombaugh sharing a detailed look at some of the ways he supplements his system with biological additives to improve soil health and yields.
In this episode of the Strip-Till Farmer podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we continue our conversation with Streator, Ill., strip-tiller Larry Tombaugh sharing a detailed look at some of the ways he supplements his system with biological additives to improve soil health and yields.
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[Podcast] Putting a Microscope on Biological Benefits in a Strip-Till System Part 1

In this episode of the <em>Strip-Till Farmer</em> podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we're joined by Streator, Ill., strip-tiller Larry Tombaugh who shares his strip-till origins and a detailed look at some of the ways he supplements his system with biological additives to improve soil health and yields.
In this episode of the Strip-Till Farmer podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we're joined by Streator, Ill., strip-tiller Larry Tombaugh who shares his strip-till origins and a detailed look at some of the ways he supplements his system with biological additives to improve soil health and yields.
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[Podcast] Keeping an Eye Out for Fall Compaction: Tools & Tips

In this episode of the <em>Strip-Till Farmer</em> podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we share excerpts from my conversations from Farm Progress on what strip-tillers should consider in terms of compaction when getting into the field for fall harvest.
In this episode of the Strip-Till Farmer podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we share excerpts from my conversations from Farm Progress on what strip-tillers should consider in terms of compaction when getting into the field for fall harvest.
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[Video] The Upside of Developing Strip-Till Down Under

While strip-till is an established practice in some parts of North America, individual objectives can vary by farm. Some seek improved fertilizer placement, while others have soil health improvement goals or yield consistency. But for Nathan Ensby and Trent Stainlay, both from New South Wales, Australia, a driving motivation for strip-till in their region is moisture retention and seedbed preparation.
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[Video] Why Do You Strip-Till?

Understanding the "why" of a strip-till system, is as important as the "how." Ben Pederson shares some of the strategic steps he's taking to embrace regenerative ag practices which intersect with a deep-rooted passion for progressive farming methods and the need to capitalize on emerging opportunities including organic.
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[Podcast] Defining Strip-Till Overseas: Benefits, Challenges & Opportunities

In this episode of the <em>Strip-Till Farmer</em> podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we share excerpts from my conversation with Nathan Ensby and Trent Stainlay, both from New South Wales, Australia, on the scope of strip-till in Australia, along with some of the adoption hurdles and greatest opportunities for expansion.
In this episode of the Strip-Till Farmer podcast, brought to you by Topcon Agriculture, we share excerpts from my conversation with Nathan Ensby and Trent Stainlay, both from New South Wales, Australia, on the scope of strip-till in Australia, along with some of the adoption hurdles and greatest opportunities for expansion.
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2019 Strip-Till Innovator

[Video] Studying My Soil: A Continuous Education through Trial & Error

With an operation that’s been called a “living laboratory,” Northfield, Minn., farmer David Legvold has embraced experimentation and shares some of the lessons learned working with local colleges and students on strip-till trials, with the goal of strengthening soil biology and creating an attractive environment for earthworms and other beneficial organisms.
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PRODUCTS

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Taking the Stress Out of Strip-Tilled Corn to Improve Yields - Jerry Hatfield - NSTC 2016 - MP3 Download

$19.95

Keeping plants healthy throughout the growing season is critical to a successful corn crop. But understanding and satisfying early season nutrient needs can help strip-tillers set the stage for a bumper crop. Jerry Hatfield, supervisory plant physiologist with the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS), has done extensive research on the interactions within the soil-plant-atmosphere spectrum and their connection to air, water and soil quality. Hatfield will discuss recent research that looks at the correlation between early-season nutrient applications on plant health in strip-tilled corn and its impact on yields.

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Creating a Biological Architecture for Strip-Till Success - Tim Smith - NSTC 2016 - MP3 Download

$19.95

Building a sustainable strip-till system and strengthening soil structure are cornerstones of Tim Smith’s corn and soybean operation in Eagle Grove, Iowa. A commitment to the NRCS’s Mississippi River Basin Initiative (MRBI) has helped Smith limit erosion, reduce fertilizer application costs and increase equipment and fuel efficiency. “The biggest return with strip-till is greatly reduced soil loss,” he says. “My soil holds up better in adverse conditions by having more residue on top to preserve structure.” Smith will share how the addition of cover crops, refinements to his nutrient management practices and the introduction of a bioreactor have contributed to a comprehensive strip-tilling strategy.

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Increasing ‘Yieldability’ of Strip-Tilled Soybeans - Ryan Groholske - NSTC 2016 - MP3 Download

$19.95

Farming 1,800 acres in Tekonsha, Mich., strip-tiller Ryan Groholske is accustomed to navigating rocky — though fertile — ground with rewarding results. Having increased strip-tilled corn yields by as much as 50 bushels per acre in some areas through intensive fertilizer experimentation, Groholske has had success applying similar strategies to increase soybean production and profitability. “With strip-till, I have a raised berm, so the plants are higher than the rest of the ground, especially on top of that corn stubble, so we’re able to harvest the plants a little bit lower,” he says. Groholske will relate his strip-tilled soybean success to his overall farm management system that includes banded nutrient applications and extensive fertilizer application analysis.

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How Well Do You Know Your Strip-Till Soils? - Ray Archuleta - NSTC 2016 - MP3 Download

$19.95

With more than 25 years of field experience with the USDA’s National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Ray Archuleta is widely regarded for his hands-on approach to analyzing and comparing soil health in a variety of tillage systems throughout the U.S. and overseas. Archuleta’s belief that promoting healthy strip-till soils requires following the lead of nature has solidified his reputation as a leading advocate for conservation tillage systems and earned him the nickname, ‘Ray the Soils Guy.’

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NSTC Speaker Presentations

Taking a Continuous Approach to Strip-Tilled Corn-on-Corn - Mike Shuter - NSTC 2015 - MP3 Audio Download

$19.95

For some farmers, their early transition to strip-till conjures up fond memories of higher yields or improved fertilizer placement, while for others, building those first berms serves more as reminder of how far they’ve come in their operation. Looking back on a decade of striptilling, Mike Shuter recalls both the pains and the gains encountered on 2,500 acres of strip-tilled corn at Shuter Sunset Farms in Frankton, Ind.

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NSTC Speaker Presentations

Getting an Accurate Reading on Soil Heath with Strip-Till - Fabian Fernandez - NSTC 2015 - MP3 Download

$19.95

University of Minnesota nutrient management specialist Fabian Fernandez understands the nutrient application flexibility that a strip-till system offers. His current research focuses on nutrient management in corn cropping systems and identifying and implementing sustainable nitrogen management practices aimed at minimizing environmental impacts and improving yields. Fernandez will compare nutrient management practices for strip-till and no-till and how to properly take soil samples to accurately represent the fertility of a field when banding fertilizer in the strip vs. a broadcast application.

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NSTC Speaker Presentations

Digging Into Long-Term Soil Health Benefits of Strip-Till - Tom Muller - NSTC 2015 - MP3 Download

$19.95

An early adopter of strip-till in his area nearly 20 years ago, Windom, Minn., farmer Tom Muller understands that creating an ideal seedbed and limiting compaction in his silty clay loam soil is only a partial benefit of the practice. Farming 2,600 acres of corn and soybeans, he’s been able to virtually “drought proof” his fields through increased water-holding capacity and infiltration.

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NSTC Speaker Presentations

Setting Strip-Till Goals to Match Field & Soil Conditions - Joey Hanson - NSTC 2015 - MP3 Download

$19.95

Growing up on a small farm in southeastern South Dakota, Joey Hanson struggled with finding the right tillage fit for the operation. Strip-till proved to be the answer to consistent yields and targeted fertilizer placement. Custom strip-tilling several thousand acres into various soil types, topography and crop rotations, the Elk Point, S.D., farmer and consultant with Diversified Agronomy deals with plenty of variability and diversity with strip-tillers within their operations.

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NSTC Speaker Presentations

A Rooted Approach to Strip-Till Corn Productivity - Mike Petersen - NSTC 2015 - MP3 Download

$19.95

 Roots are the somewhat forgotten side of the corn plant, but it’s where more than 95% of nutrients are absorbed, stored or transported. 

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2014 Speaker Presentations

Maximizing Nutrient Uptake In The Root Zone, Balancing Soil & Minerals - Bob Yanda - NSTC 2014 Presentation - MP3 Download

$19.95

Achieving proper soil fertility comes down to hitting the maximum level of nutrients that are exchangeable in the soil for optimal crop performance. This means nutrients are available in a form that the plant roots can absorb from the soil complex. Bob Yanda says the levels of nutrients are important, but it’s more critical that they be exchangeable to the root. View

EVENTS

Webinar

[Webinar] Understanding Soil Health – Where We Are and Where We Need to Go

3/13/19
In this webinar, sponsored by AgroLiquid, Dr. Zouheir Massri will help you understand soil health as its related to soil functionality and where we need to go to take soil health to the next level. Read More

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