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Practice Code: 310
Reporting Unit: Number (No.)

Bedding is a relatively low-cost practice that improves surface drainage and creates an elevated, more favorable planting condition for establishment of field crops, trees, and other types of vegetation. It does not apply to the cultural practice of “listing” or bedding cropland on an annual basis.

The ridges and furrows minimize ponding, provide gradients for removing excess water, permit efficient operation of equipment, and help eliminate mosquito production.

Beds run in the direction of the general slope so that drainage can be provided without causing erosion. Engineering surveys are not needed when the general slope of the land is known. However, the furrows are to be graded toward a natural or constructed outlet with sufficient capacity and protection from erosion.

Bedding will require maintenance over the expected life of the practice.

Purposes and Benefits

  • Protects water quality
  • Improves drainage of surface water
  • Improves crop productivity, health and vigor

Conservation Practice Documents

Web link image: Field Office Technical Guide

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:

Tree Shrub Establishment
Water and Sediment Control Basin

If you want to learn how you can protect natural resources on your farm or forestland, please contact your local NRCS Service Center.


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