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Soil Tech Note 21A- "If you get the chance..."

“If you get the chance…”

SITUATION:  Landowner comes into office and wants to sign up for program activities…… BE PREPARED! 


  • You need to have a plan for your discussion on soil health!  Nothing detailed but need “talking points” to see if there is interest in actual soil health.


  • You need to decide what good soil management points you want to get across!  Only “cover crops” or all other possibilities?!


  • Have tentative list for his “problems” that can be addressed!  i.e.


    •  “doesn’t dry out” 
    • “hard pan”
    • “corn stalks don’t seem to decompose”
    •  “weeds where I didn’t have before” …….


  • Know or find out what the “resource concerns” are…..if they doesn’t know specifically, apply what you know in the county to his general farming location and operation.


  • Listen intently and “read between the lines” as best you can to determine what their needs are.  Example, did he sign up for cover crops because he has a real soil need for them or just heard that might be a good way to get more government money?!


  • If they chooses a program activity explain it in detail so that they understand what affect that practice will have on improving the soil.