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Healthy Soils = Productive Farmlands

Agriculture or Grazing Lands

There is a growing recognition for the need to regenerate and revitalize farmland soil.

The key to long-term dividends, higher crop yields, and productive farmlands is found in soil health.

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Healthy soil = strong agricultural lands

Healthy soils produce high quality, nutrient dense produce. Furthermore, soils filled with strong rooted, organic matter are able to hold larger capacities of moisture. Moisture retention is not only better for crops, but also means less erosion. When the land retains water, it acts as a giant sponge, filtering and absorbing nutrients and contaminants that would otherwise enter water sources. Thriving soils, with abundant organic matter, stack benefits for farmers and their neighbors.

All about soil health

Exhaustion of organic soil matter, and a depletion of a diverse population of soil organisms is often the source of agricultural difficulties. Morrison SWCD focuses on general soil health management and the strength of natural biological systems, which go a long way to preventing many agricultural issues.

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Your local SWCD advocates for farming and grazing practices that rebuild organic topsoil matter and restore degraded soil biodiversity. Our goal is to see productive family farmlands, robust soils, and improved regional water quality.

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Savvy agricultural professionals understand the significance of organic matter, including living organisms in the soil. Age old management practices like conservation tillage, cover crops, crop rotation, composting, and rotational grazing have come back into practice.

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The reactionary farmer believes most soil-related problems can be dealt with by just using external inputs, aka… fertilizers, irrigation, subsoilers, or pesticides. But problems like nutrient deficiencies, minimal moisture retention, compacted soils, plant disease or insect infestations are often symptoms of underlying problems.

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Buffer Strips

Buffers of grasses, hedges, and trees are an effective soil conservation tool that can be used to improve water quality. They minimize soil erosion by reducing surface runoff. 

 

Conservation buffer strips limit the movement of soil sediment, nutrients, pesticides, and pathogens through the soil from the field. Furthermore, they improve wildlife habitat and air quality by reducing chemical emissions. 

 

These buffers have even proven to be effective at degrading pesticides and in lessening pesticide concentrations in subsurface water flow.

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Conservation Agronomist

Hi, I'm Kolby Beehler

I can help find ways to accomplish your agricultural goals. There are plenty of management options, and you are in control of which ones to use.

Conservation Agronomist
Phone - (320) 733-3045

Email - Kolby.Beehler@morrisonswcd.org

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Ag Programs

Click on the programs or serveces below for more information...

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Ag BMP Loan Program

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MAWQCP

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Buffer Law

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Native Prairie Restoration

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Conservation Agronomy

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Nitrogen Fertilizer 

Managemen Plan

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Pheasants Forever

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Water & Sediment Control Basin

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Conservation & Cattle

Grazing, when managed carefully and properly, can actually improve wildlife diversity and soil health.

Conservationists and agricultural professionals have learned that when creatively managed, cattle can mimic grazing patterns similar to that of bison, which once covered the prairie and whose presence was vital to the ecosystem. Cattle may have different grazing patterns than wild bison, but agricultural professionals have management options that can be used to minimize the impacts of cattle. Those include fenced enclosures around sensitive areas and tactics that shift the locations where cattle spend most of their time. Creating new burned patches, turning on/off drinking water facilities, and moving mineral feeders around.

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