Ken, Sue and Mike Rosenow are the sixth generation in their family to farm in Oconomowoc, WI on land settled before the Civil War. They grow corn, soybeans, winter wheat, and hay as their cash crops, but have tested a variety of cover crops on the farm as well.
Peas, radish, berseem clover, sunflower, and cereal rye have all been assessed for their viability as a cover crop on the Rosenow’s Wisconsin farm. Ken Rosenow also favors a mostly no-till management approach on their acres, which he says saves on machinery investment, fuel, and labor.
“I hope that, by planting cover crops, it helps to protect the soil from erosion and to hold the nutrients for the next crop,” Ken said.
The family also believes in science-based nutrient management on their farm. Soil testing and estimating fertility needs of the crops they grow is a key component of their farm management.
Ken joined the Soil Health Partnership in 2016 to learn more about improving water infiltration and cost savings through better soil health.
“We have learned how others are using cover crops and the benefits that can be achieved,” said Ken. “Plus, the opportunities to meet with other participants is very valuable.”