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Crop Rotation

scenic farm view of crop rotationCrop rotation is changing the crops grown in a field, usually year by year.

How it helps...

  • Pesticide costs may be reduces by naturally breaking the cycle of weeds, insects and diseases
  • Grass and legumes in a rotation protect water quality by preventing excess nutrients or chemicals from entering water supplies
  • Meadow or small grains cut soil erosion dramatically
  • Crop rotations add diversity to an operation


  • Profits
  • Soil erosion
  • Water Quality
  • Wildlife


  • Design crop rotations to meet your farm’s needs and goals for yields and erosion control.
  • Rotations that contain small grains and hay provide better erosion control.
  • Sod or hay-based rotations offer long-term crop production flexibility.
  • Reduce the potential for nitrate leaching to groundwater by rotating crops that provide nitrogen (alfalfa, clover, soybeans) with crops that use nitrogen (corn, wheat).
  • Consider the potential for herbicide carryover to avoid crop failure.
  • Consider the nitrogen credit when replacing a legume with corn or other grains.