Farm name: Knuth Farms
Growers: Angela and Kerry Knuth
Location: Mead, Nebraska
Acres farmed: 2200 acres
A third-generation farmer, Kerry Knuth started out farming with his dad and grandfather. Today, Kerry and Angela Knuth farm with their two sons, the fourth generation, Gregory and Garrison in Mead, Nebraska. Since 2012, the Knuths have been moving toward a more diversified rotation alongside traditional corn and soybeans. They have added into their rotation wheat, sorghum sudan grass, and cover crops for grazing, and are beginning the transition process to non-GMO/organic on a portion of their acres.
Knuth Farms has used tillage radish, cereal rye and sorghum sudan grass.
Strip-till and no-till corn since 2005; no-till soybeans since 2005
“We like the cost savings we’ve seen on no-till. We don’t have to own tillage equipment and we don’t have to run it across the field,” said Angela. “We have been pleased to see no decrease in yield. We’re hoping to see that continued decrease in our cost of production and improvement in the soil tilth and microbe activity.”
The Knuths do soil sampling every fall. They use software to bring together management practices with field metrics (soil, water, tissue), which helps them build a fertilizer schedule for each field based on yield goal and in-season field data. By building a history of each farm with soil testing and then combining that with the use of the latest software and hardware technology, the Knuths can create a plan for each field and then apply that plan based on growth stage and field conditions during the growing season.
“We joined the Soil Health Partnership in 2017 because we want to learn how to make our soils better, regenerate them and we need help with that,” said Angela. “We’re not scientists and we want to know how these practices improve our soil. We look forward to learning more with the partnership.”