Adding Wild Bergamot to Your CRP

Monardo fistulosa, better known as wild bergamot or bee balm, is a wildflower belonging to the mint family. This perennial can be found throughout much of North America in thickets, clearings, and dry fields. Wild bergamot can easily be identified by its summer-blooming flowers that typically range from pink to lavender (though they can also be white). These flowers produce a strong fragrance (as well as a potent taste …

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How CRP Improves Soil Health

America is running out of soil.   Currently, the US loses topsoil 10x faster than it’s being replenished. Without healthy topsoil, the crops and materials we depend on can’t grow. Unfortunately, we can’t wait for topsoil to simply replenish itself. It takes roughly 500 years for a single inch of topsoil to be created naturally. At the rate we’re going, we could run out …

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CRP to Be Expanded and Enhanced in 2021

Since taking office in January, President Biden and his administration have made it clear that sustainability and environmental protection are top priorities. While actions such as establishing a regulated carbon market could take some time to implement, the government is already expanding existing programs such as the Conservation Reserve Program.  CRP has proven to be one of the most successful voluntary conservation …

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Blue Grama – Great for Erosion Control and Grazing

Bouteloua gracilis, more commonly referred to as “blue grama”, is a popular warm-season perennial grass. As the widest distributed of all grama grasses, it can be found throughout the Midwest and Plains region, as well as states like California, Florida, and Maine.   Despite the name, it is typically green, turning gold towards the end of the year. Additionally, it bears distinct comb-like floral spikes that can range from green to a reddish-purple. When fully grown, blue …

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Why Farmers Need to Take Soil Erosion Seriously

Every farmer understands how important topsoil is. After all, 95% of our food depends on it. Unfortunately, the US is losing topsoil 10x faster than it’s being replenished. Considering it takes at least 100 years for new topsoil to develop, this is a very serious issue.   It is not, however, a new issue.  We’ve lost over half of our topsoil over the past 150 …

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General CRP Enrollment for 2021 Has Been Extended

Annual enrollment for general CRP officially opened on January 4th of this year. Originally, enrollment was scheduled to close on February 12. However, the USDA has officially announced that enrollment will remain open for an unspecified period of time.  This means that farmers and landowners still have a chance to submit proposals and earn a contract for general CRP …

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Canada Wildrye – A Bunchgrass That’s Great for Erosion Control

Elymus canadensis, better known as Canada wildrye or Canadian wildrye, is a cool-season perennial bunchgrass found throughout most of the US. It is especially common in plains areas, though it can also be found in woodlands, dunes, and savannas. In addition to thriving in a variety of soil types, it’s also shade tolerant.  Canada wildrye can grow between 2.5 to 6 feet tall. When fully grown, it features thick seed heads with long, thin …

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Joining the Carbon Market as a Farmer

With the emphasis the Biden administration is placing on sustainability and the environment, it’s a guarantee that farmers will be affected over the next four years. In fact, farmers may be the key to making President Biden’s goals a reality. After all when it comes to carbon sequestration, herbaceous sequestration provides a number of advantages over woody sequestration.    …

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The Biden Administration’s Plans for Agriculture and Carbon Banking

Just over a month into his presidency, President Joe Biden has already signed more than 50 executive orders into action. While the majority of these policies are focused on the pandemic and immigration, the environment is also a key focus of the new president. President Biden has significant plans for reducing emissions and combatting climate changes, and farmers are certain to play …

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Sideoats Grama: A Short, Nutritious Warm Season Grass

Bouteloua curtipendula is a short prairie grass better known as sideoats grama. This bunchy grass is known for its oat-like clusters that grow to one side of its stems. The stems themselves can reach heights of 2-3 feet tall. Though typically green with clusters of golden brown, sideoats grama can turn purple or red later in the year.  This warm season perennial can be found throughout almost all of the …

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