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Soil Health Sampling
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Soil Health (Soil Samping)

Nutrient management for crop production begins with an inventory of our soil test nutrient levels in a field.  The common approach to achieve our systematic soil sampling is to overlay a square or rectangular grid on a map or photograph of the field then identify and drive to the middle of each grid cell, and collect a soil sample at that point.  The soil cores are composited and bagged as one soil sample for analysis at a soil testing laboratory.  While easy to implement in the field, this practice can lead to bias. With the development of the Global Positioning System (GPS), we can navigate to locations in a field without counting rows or physically measuring distance

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Cover Crops

Cover Crops Image by Sofia Ornelas

I've attended numerous conferences every year and these are some of the things that I have learned. Spreading and planting many different species for many different reasons on a cover crop works well with a single species I learned a lot and the biggest benefits of using cover crops is less soil erosion that the water is leaving from my farms. when we're using a diverse mix of seeds, we need to get all of those seeds into the soil. We also realize that cycling nutrients is very important for our soil,  we try to get as much as we can out of the soil with our cover crops . We were accepted in the H20 program which helps pay for people to be better stewards of the land. We try to focus our landowners to partake in our new soil health programs.  We begins to see differences, the acres grow because of the cost savings over tillage and these savings offset the cost of cover crops. We implemented cover crops very early on,  in 2001,but struggled to find the most efficient incorporation into the no till system. Our original approach to crop management was to burn down the cover crops but now we have better success planting green into the cover crops.  Sulfur is also added to the nitrogen and applied at planting and also side dressed. From corn to soybean I've used a mix of ryegrass.

Machinery enhanced with GPS

Machinery enhanced with GPS

Our equipment is equipped with a tremendous amount of technology to record and apply according to our needs. We are able to keep detailed records of our GPS history for not only our purposes but also if we were ever audited by the government.

Machinery enhanced with GPS System
Preparing land for next generation at Heitz Family Farm
Working with Nature and Wildlife

Preparing Land for Next Generation

Farming is an increasingly complex business in an increasingly complex industry. Does the next generation have the necessary skills, knowledge and capacity to take over our farm? We want ensure there’s a fit between the generations when it comes to our core values.  Our core values are to make the land better then when we originally found it, to be a good steward of the land, and to build positive working relationships with the landlords . 

Working with Nature and Wildlife

We are constantly striving to be a better steward of the land and being educated the best that we can about improving the soil health and eliminating soil erosion. We are understanding the need to use the cover crops that allow the wildlife to feed on.  We realize that cover crops not only improve the soil but provide food for wildlife.

Did you know that one Black Angus Cattle can provide enough Ground beef for 1,500 quarter- pund Hamburgers? Learn More Below

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