No-Till November: Keeping Stubble for Soil Quality
With 3 Ways Biologicals Can Support a Farmer’s Decision to Go No-Till
You may have heard of No-Shave November, a month where men choose not to shave their beards to grow awareness for cancer prevention. Well, it’s also No-Till November, a similar yet different campaign, where farmers are instead encouraged to “keep their stubble” on harvested crop fields.
The month of November is focused on promoting no-till practices and educating farmers on the benefits this can have for soil quality, sustainability, and farm productivity.
This blog covers:
- What is No-Till Farming
- Key Advantages of No-Till
- Making the Switch to No-Till
- Enhancing No-Till with Biologicals
- Selecting the Right Biologicals for No-Till Farmers
What Is No-Till Farming?
No-till farming is a practice where crops are planted directly into the soil without plowing or tilling the ground. This allows crop residues and stubble to remain intact on the soil surface.
Key Advantages of No-Till
Some of the key advantages of no-till include: Reduced soil erosion, preserved soil structure, slower breakdown of organic matter, provided protective cover for the soil, soils that retain moisture, improved water infiltration, and sequestered carbon in the soil.
Making the Switch to No-Till
Transitioning to continuous no-till can take some adjustment, as it often requires specialized planting equipment, and changes to nutrient or other crop management programs.
But the long-term rewards – like improved soil quality, reduced fuel and labor costs, and higher organic matter levels over time – can be plentiful.
Enhancing No-Till with Biologicals
When making a change, like going to no-till, it’s important to consider decisions that can help set you up for success. Using agricultural biological products can enhance the benefits of no-till systems, even in early years.
Here are three benefits agricultural biologicals can bring to no-till farmers:
- Accelerated Growth in Cooler Soils: Because no-till fields are not tilled, the soil remains cooler. Biological products containing beneficial microbes can accelerate early season root growth and vegetative development even in cooler soils. This gives crops a boost right after planting.
- Expanded Root Systems to Access Nutrients: Root systems are more restricted and concentrated in no-till since the soil is undisturbed. The beneficial microbes in biologicals colonize the root system and support expanded lateral and vertical root growth. This allows crops to access more nutrients and moisture deeper in the soil profile.
- (The Potential to) Translocate and Cycle Nutrients Deeper into Soils: In no-till, nutrients like phosphorus and calcium can become stratified at the top of the soil and are at risk of runoff. Because biological products support increased root length and density that reaches deeper in the soil profile, biologicals that contain endophytic microbes – microorganisms that enter into and live symbiotically within plant tissues for the duration of the plant’s life cycle – have the potential to naturally translocate and cycle nutrients down deeper into the root zone where they are more available to the crop.
Selecting the Right Biologicals for No-Till Farmers
When looking for biological products to complement a no-till system, consider Locus AG biologicals.
With Locus AG biologicals, farmers often experience significant benefits of:
- Expanded root growth
- Increased nutrient uptake
- Enhanced plant vigor
- Improved soil quality
- Increased yields & ROI
Because of the endophytic nature of Locus AG biologicals, farmers experience these benefits regardless of tillage practice or soil conditions.
Locus AG biologicals are produced in the USA, available for immediate shipment, and are supplied through many major agricultural distributors and retailers.
Just as growing a beard raises awareness for men’s health, keeping stubble in the field benefits our soils. This No-Till November, consider letting your soil rest and reap the rewards in the years to come. Your fields will thank you! Add in biologicals to maximize the performance of your no-till cropping system.
Want to learn how Locus AG vital biologicals can increase your yields and profits?
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