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Science in action to improve the sustainability of agriculture, natural resources, and food systems
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Author: Andrew McGuire

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Yield Benefits of Crop Rotation: Crop Diversity or Active Crop Time?

Crop rotation is a time-proven practice. Compared to monocropping—the continuous production of the same crop year after year—growing two, three, or even more crops can…

Biodiversity, Healthy Soils, and their Combination in Regenerative Agriculture can Reduce but not Replace Fertilizer

“Dependent on off-farm inputs…” Can it be otherwise? People inside and outside of science like to point to how nature needs no inputs, yet still…

Why Ecological Biodiversity Research Results Seldom Apply to Agriculture

Ecologists, agroecologists, and regenerative agriculture advocates are promoting biodiversity to solve many of agriculture's problems. They often base this on evidence of the benefits of…

Contrary Science; Cover Crop Mixtures, Monocultures, and Mechanisms

Planting diverse cover crop mixtures will increase soil microbial diversity and achieve increased benefits over monocultures because of the synergistic interactions of the different plant…

MAXIMIZE and minimize; Two Principles for Managing Soil Health.

Soil health management can be distilled to two principles: Maximize photosynthesis & minimize tillage. These are principles; they do not tell you what practices you…

Just-In-Time Soil Health

How much is enough soil organic matter? “The more, the better” is often the assumed answer, or at least as much as the native soil…

How does regenerative agriculture reduce nutrient inputs?

“When you start farming regeneratively, you rely a lot less on external inputs, such as fertilizers…"  - Tom Tolputt One of regenerative agriculture’s extraordinary claims…

Soil (health) evaluation begins by asking “What’s the problem with my soil?”

Soil health - the pursuit that launched a thousand soil tests. I have not actually counted them, but many people are working on many ways…

Soil biology and soil organic matter; What do recent discoveries mean for soil management?

This Changes Everything. That is how everything is presented in today’s media. New cars, new policies, new science. An example of the latter are the…

2018 Cover Crop Monoculture vs Mixture Update

Since my 2016 post, “Cover crop best bet is monoculture, not mix,” I have continued to follow the research on cover crop mixtures looking for…
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