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The Impact of the Conservation Reserve Program

Since launching with the 1985 Farm Bill, the Conservation Reserve Program has set out to reduce soil erosion, improve water quality, and restore wildlife habitat. It does so by paying farmers and landowners to take marginal farmland out of active production.  In place of traditional farm crops, which can deplete soil health and fertility overtime, farmers establish

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What Do I Need to Plant CRP?

Looking to enroll or just recently enrolled land in CRP? If you’re new to the program, it’s natural to have a few questions. The Conservation Reserve Program has a number of specific requirements that contract holders must follow, including what seed is used, how it’s planted, and how it’s maintained.  Before you get too far along in

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The Effects of Tilling on Soil

Farmers have long employed various methods to disrupt soil, using sticks, hoes, ards, rakes, and plows to turn the ground and prepare farmland. This is process is known as tillage.   Tillage serves a number of purposes including seed bed preparation, burying crop residue, leveling soil, spreading nutrients, mixing in fertilizer, and activating pesticides. It’s also very helpful with

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CRP vs. Crop Rotation – What’s Best for My Land?

Growing the same crops in the same spot year after year can take a toll on soil, depleting it of certain nutrients and leaving it unbalanced. As the soil’s health decreases, water runoff and erosion increases, damaging the soil further. Ultimately, this results in weaker crop yields.  Farmers have long employed techniques to combat this.  One of the more aggressive methods of keeping soil balanced

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How Soil Erosion and Farming Practices Lead to the Dust Bowl

In 1929, the United States stock market crashed, kickstarting a decade long period known as the Great Depression. The exact causes for this crash are heavily debated to this day, though common factors typically include overproduction of crop and industrial materials, overpricing of stock values, and easy credit/loan practices.   Farmers were already in a tough spot leading

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The Importance of Pollinator Diversity in CRP

The honeybee has long been the US’s main pollinator, contributing over $15 billion to our economy every year. Over the past few decades, however, the honeybee has seen its population cut in half largely due to colony collapse disorder.   If things continue at this rate, the honeybee could be extinct by 2035.   Unfortunately, counteracting CCD directly has proven to be difficult. Eliminating the use

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