Bedford County Conservation District

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Equipment Rental Program

No-Till Equipment

No Till Planting, also known as conservation tillage or zero tillage, is a way of growing crops from year to year without disturbing the soil through tillage. It is becoming more common as researchers study its effects and farmers uncover its economic benefits. To assist farmers in adapting no-till planting and cover crops to their operations, the Bedford County Conservation District manages an equipment rental program for no-till corn planters and drills for small grains and grasses. Technical assisatnce with the conversion to no-till operations is provided by Conservation District Staff and District partners.

Equipment Rental Tri-fold brochure

Cover Crops

A cover crop can be any annual, biennial, or perennial plant grown to improve conditions associated with sustainable agriculture. Cover crops are useful in managing soil fertility, improving and preserving soil quality, retaining soil water and preventing polluted run-off, reducing weeds, pests, and diseases, and benefiting diversity and wildlife. Farmers choose and manage cover crops to satisfy their own unique needs and goals. A few of the benefits cover crops can provide are:

  • minimizes soil compaction
  • minimizse carbon loss
  • reduces labor, fuel, and machinery costs
  • reduces water loss by evaporation and promotes infiltration of precipitation
  • conserves soil layers and soil organisms in natural state
  • reduces structural breakdown of soils
  • protects against soil erosion
  • reduces dust pollution
  • promotes beneficial insects, annelids, and microbes

The Conservation District frequently promotes projects that assist producers in the transition to and maintenance of no-till operations through cost-share and incentive payment programs. Information concerning enrollment in these programs will be found on this page during signup periods, or call the Conservation District at 814-623-8099 to find out more.

Cover Crops Can Make Organic No-Till Work

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