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Triage farming

publication date: Aug 1, 2017
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When I came on as farm manager at my current farm, it had doubled in size every year for five years. The year before I arrived, the farm had taken on a 30-acre piece of land, which I was told suffered from poor drainage and a scourge of annual grasses. The prior farm manager had grown the farm successfully through two seasons, but left after a season managing the new site.

I was coming in with a challenge in front of me, I knew that much. I spent the first winter learning everything I could about heavy soils, compacted soils, deep tillage, minimal tillage, deep-rooting cover crops, long rotations, cultivation equipment, and weed management strategies. I bought a flame weeder and invested $2,000 in a subsoil-busting cover crop blend. In spring, I came out swinging.

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