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Living roots, low-input Costs

Turning Cover Crops into Cash Crops Boosts Profit And Lowers Costs.

Photo courtesy of the Steinlage family.

Keeping living roots in the ground year-round is Loran Steinlage’s top priority for his West Union, Iowa, farm. His second aim is earning a profit through a twin-pronged strategy of growing low-input, high-output cash crops.

Juggling the goals for his operation keeps his rotation in “a state of flux,” Steinlage points out. While the crop rotation may change, it’s always working to improve soil health and thus continually reduce the cropping system’s dependence on purchased inputs.


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