Greg raises corn, seed corn, corn silage and soybeans on about 2,600 acres, some of which he can trace back to his ancestor, a Civil War officer, and an 1879 homestead in Shelby, Nebraska.
Greg has deep roots with the Soil Health Partnership, joining at its inception in 2014. “I joined because I was using cover crops and no-till. I wanted to see if the economic and environmental gains and soil quality were real or just perceived,” said Greg. “Since joining, I have seen less wind and water erosion and better water infiltration and retention.”
Most of Greg’s cover crops follow the harvesting of silage for erosion control, and to help with nutrient retention of manure applications. Other cover crop acres follow seed acres, where he grows corn under contract with a seed company to produce seed corn for them. The cover crops help with weed control.
Greg practices no-till on most of the acres.
“I use strip-till ahead of the corn acres to place nitrogen, phosphorus and sulphur below where I will plant the seed,” Greg said. “On the manured acres, I can apply most of our nutrient needs with effluent from a large local dairy through our center pivots, which we must manage to meet state and federal guidelines.”
Greg says that a lot of little things can make the difference between success and failure. He’s had his cut of both, and wants to share that with other farmers to help them, and to learn from their experiences, as well.