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Soil Health

Unlock the Secrets in the SoilSoil is a living and life-giving substance, without which we would perish.

As world population and food production demands rise, keeping our soil healthy and productive is of paramount importance. So much so that we believe improving the health of our Nation’s soil is one of the most important endeavors of our time.

By focusing more attention on soil health and by educating our customers and the public about the positive impact healthy soils can have on productivity and conservation, we can help our Nation’s farmers and ranchers feed the world more profitably and sustainably – now and for generations to come.

The resources on this soil health section of our site are designed to help visitors understand the basics and benefits of soil health – and to learn about Soil Health Management Systems from farmers who are using those systems.

So whether you’re a farmer, a researcher, a conservationist or an interested citizen, the information on this site will help you “Unlock the Secrets in the Soil.

Cover Crop Economics

The Cover Crop Economics Tool is a user-friendly economic assessment tool to assess the costs and benefits of incorporating cover crops into a crop rotation. The tool assesses both the short term and long term expected costs and benefits. If you have any problems accessing the tool from this site, using the tool, or if you are interested in being added to an email list to be notified when updated versions of the tool are released, please contact Lauren Cartwright.

Document Description Download
Cover Crop Economics Tool Spreadsheet based economic assessment tool to assess the costs and benefits of incorporating cover crops into a crop rotation.  

Cover Crop Economics Version 2.1

Cover Crop Economics Tool Demonstrations

On demand video replays demonstrating the Cover Crop Economics Tool

20 Minute Demo

1 Hour Demo

Cover Crop Economics Informational Flyer
One page flyer that provides a brief description and overview of the Cover Crop Economics Tool. Cover Crop Economics Informational Flyer

Cover Crop Questionnaire
Are you a producer utilizing cover crops?  Do you work with producers utilizing cover crops?  This questionnaire is designed to capture information from producers utilizing cover crops.  This information is utilized to develop Missouri-specific case studies and improve our understanding of the short term economics of cover crops.  All individual responses will remain confidential.  If you are interested in providing information about your experiences please complete the questionnaire.  Return instructions are provided at the top of the questionnaire.
Cover Crop Questionnaire
Cover Crop Economics Case Studies One page case studies utilizing the Cover Crop Economics Tool and based on experiences of Missouri producers utilizing cover crops. 
Coming Soon



NRCS Missouri Soil Health Videos

Learn more about the benefits of soil health by watching one of NRCS Missouri's soil health videos.

Soil Health Publications

Browse through NRCS-sponsored publications for helpful information on soil health.

Soil Health Events in Missouri

The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the University of Missouri are hosting a free Soil Health Exposition August 13-14. The exposition will be at MU’s Bradford Research and Extension Center (4968 Rangeline Road), about six miles east of Columbia.

The two-day exposition will feature vendors, tours, demonstrations and presentations by farmers who have successfully incorporated cover crops into their operations. The exposition will feature an open admission, so participants may attend as few or as many of the sessions as they choose. Events will be occurring from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. each day. Topics will include: climate variability; understanding soil data; economics of cover crops; cover cropping and improved infiltration; effects of Glyphosate on soil biology; the latest soil health field equipment; field demonstrations; soils exhibits; and soil pits and properties. Equipment and seed dealers also will be present. For more information, or to register for the free event, contact Mark Abney.