Residue and Tillage Management, Ridge Till
Practice Code: 346
Reporting Unit: Acre (Ac.)
Ridge tillage is the practice of managing the amount, orientation, and distribution of crop and other plant residues on the soil surface year-round, while growing crops on pre-formed ridges alternated with furrows protected by crop residue.
Purposes and Benefits
Residue cover prevents soil erosion and protects water quality
Residue improves soil tilth and adds organic matter to the soil
Fewer trips and less tillage reduces soil compaction and improves air quality
Time, energy and labor savings are realized with fewer tillage trips
Soil formed into ridges generally warms faster in the spring allowing for earlier planting and seed germination
Farming With Crop Residues
Farming with Crop Residues, a brochure published by the NRCS, presents photographs of various percentages of ground cover that can be expected using different tillage techniques.
Conservation Practice Support Documents
Support Documents for this conservation practice are available for download from an abbreviated version of Section IV of the NRCS Field Office Technical Guide (FOTG).
All support documents associated with this and other conservation practices are available at the NRCS Field Office Technical Guide web site.
Related Conservation Practices
This practice is commonly used in a Conservation Management System with practices such as:
Conservation Crop Rotation (328)
Cover Crop (340)
Mulching (with organic materials) (484)
Mulching (with plastic) (484)
Residue and Tillage Management, Mulch Till (345)
Residue and Tillage Management, No-Till/Strip Till/Direct Seed (329)
If you want to learn how you can protect natural resources on your farm or forestland, please contact your local NRCS office.
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