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For My Business
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Best Practices
Learn More
Through Best Practices
Building Soil Health
Improving the Community
Improving My Farm
Best Management Practices

For My Farm

Ohio farmers are using best practices to improve the health of the soil and land they farm. 

For My Business

For Ohio farmers, best practice management results in covering more acres in less time, with less equipment and using less fuel, improving the bottom line.

For My Community

Improvements in soil health, water quality and overall business revenue not only help each farm, but the communities they support.

Farmer Insights

Hear from Ohio farmers about their use of best practices

Andy Stickel

Stickel Farms

Bowling Green, Ohio

Lane Osswald

Growing Acres Farm

Eldorado, Ohio

Benefits of Best Practice Management

Using best practices leads to better outcomes

Best Practices for a Better Business

Following industry best practices can result in benefits for your farm, business and community

CONTOURED ROWS

Contour farming uses row patterns that run nearly level around an uneven field. It reduces soil erosion by as much as 50 percent and reduces sediment and runoff. 

GRASS WATERWAYS

Areas between hills and other low areas are prone to gully formation during heavy rains. When gullies form, it increases soil erosion and nutrient runoff.

Benefits:

  • Grass waterways prevent gully erosion.
  • Grass waterways keep valuable soil and nutrients on the field.

Stoney Creek, Wabash River Watershed, Fort Recovery, Ohio

COVER CROPS

Cover crops are crops grown for the protection and enrichment of the soil.

Benefits:

  • Cover crops can boost profits in the first year planted.
  • Cover crops provide weed-suppressing biomass.
  • Cover crops hold soil in place during cold-weather months.

Twin Creek Watershed, Eldorado, Ohio

TILE INTAKES

Buried tile intakes allow water to be filtered through layers of soil and rock before it soaks into perforated tile and is drained away.

SOIL SAMPLING

Soil sampling helps farmers make informed decisions about nutrient application that leads to better soil fertility.

NO-TILL

No-till means the ground is not worked with a plow before planting or after harvest.

Benefits:

  • No-tilling cuts back on soil erosion.
  • It leaves organic matter on the field making farm operations more efficient.
  • No-till farming reduces the time needed to prepare the field for planting.
  • It reduces fuel use from not plowing.

Kenton, Ohio, Hardin County

STRIP-TILL

Strip-tilling combines the benefits of traditional tillage with the soil-protection advantages of no-till. Only the portion of the soil that contains the seed row is tilled.

SIDEDRESSING

Sidedressing of nutrients means applying during the growing season when crops need it most. This helps prevent over-application and losing fertilizer to surrounding waterways.

BANDING

Fertilizer is applied in bands near where developing roots will easily reach it – either to the side and below the seed rows, slightly below the seeds, or in between rows. The banded application keeps contact between soil and fertilizer to a minimum.

FERTILIZER INJECTING

Injection of fertilizers and nutrients below the soil is an effective technology for nutrient conservation on the farm. Because the fertilizers are injected below the surface, atmospheric losses of nutrients and surface runoff is minimized.

Research and Education Funded by Ohio Farmers


4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program

Edge-of-Field Testing

Updating Tristate Fertility Guide

 

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