The Missouri Delta Soil Health Alliance is a group of locally led Earth Team volunteers, established to promote the benefits of soil health management in Southeast Missouri. The group was organized in 2014 by a combination of landowners and producers who understood the value of soil health for the sustainability of their operations and the need to educate other producers in Southeast Missouri.
Since the Alliance’s creation, this group of volunteers has hosted three Soil Health Conferences with nearly 300 people attending each event. Volunteers coordinate the annual event, and arrange for nationally known soil health experts to speak at each conference. Speakers include Ray Archuletta, Gabe Brown, Dave Brandt, Russell Hedrick and Mike Plummer.
The Alliance also hosts an annual soil health tour, showcasing soil health practices including cover crops, no-till and soil moisture monitoring techniques in diversified crop fields. Tours take producers to cotton, rice, corn, soybean and pasture fields where soil health practices are implemented. Local Earth Team volunteers open their facilities for others to look at equipment that has been customized for no-till and cover crop planting and have given field demonstrations to allow those attending the tour to get hands on experience. Attendance at the tour in March 2017 had more than 175 participants.
The Missouri Delta Soil Health Alliance is committed to educating farmers in not only Southeast Missouri but also in the surrounding states. Because of the outreach that these Earth Team volunteers have provided, they have had landowners and farmers attending both the conference and tours from Illinois, Arkansas, Tennessee, Oregon, Ohio, Indiana and Mississippi. Together, they logged more than 250 hours of service in Fiscal Year 2017 and they have provided outreach to more than 1,000 landowners and operators, spreading the good word about soil health.
To learn more about the Missouri Delta Soil Health Alliance you can find them on Facebook at Missouri Delta Soil Health Alliance @MOdeltasoilhealthalliance.