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This is an example of a cover field that was miss-timed in planting. With our freeze/ thaw cycles the top of the ground can turn to dust. Then when a front comes through and the wind blows 50mph, you get a dust storm. This was next to I-70 and caused zero visibility, no fatalities though.  No-till planting loosens the soil more and causes the field to blow even easier.This will be an interesting field to watch this year.
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2016-04-14
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They have a dream.

"The Hyperspectral scanner uses some 2500 wavebands compared to our digital cameras which use 3 wavebands. We took the decision to evaluate the technology for assessing the characteristics of soils remotely."

"Our ambition is to undertake soil testing from the sky."

They took soil samples on research farms and compared the results to data gathered remotely with scanners. Good match at very small scales. No one could afford to do so many soil samples in a production setting, but they can afford fly-by scanning.

Combine this data with aerial application of nutrients and this could be a large advance in precision ag of particular value for ranches and farms with varied topography. Less material would be needed to achieve better results.

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"Ecosystem functions such as carbon storage and the availability of nutrients are linked to the bugs, bacteria and other microscopic organisms that occur in the soil. In fact, as much as 32% of the variation seen in ecosystem functions can be explained by the biodiversity in the soil."

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Aussies are so smart!!

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When I grew soybeans it was important to get the seed in the ground ASAP within 24 hours after it was inoculated. I asked when I started growing covers why it wasn't important because it was inoculated when it was mixed and then sent out in a tote. Some times because of weather it might take a week to get it in the ground. Basically, I got a lot of double talk why it didn't matter but they got their 3 cents a pound charge.

With Cover Solutions they send out the inoculant with the seed to mix at the proper time. I believe this is the right way to do things. I did some digging and the Sun Hemp is setting on nodules. The Sun Hemp looks like a good deal.
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capturing N
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I got my 3 year covercrop experiment up and going. I am using the Homestead Mix from Cover Solutions as the base mix. I threw in some yellow clover and cool season grasses for the NRCS mixes. The one field I inoculated it with AMF. I also planted a field with just the Homestead Mix alone. I am impressed with way the sunnhemp comes up, it's the first out of the ground.
Here's a couple of articles on sunnhemp.

http://www.foragefirst.com/2014/08/sunn-hemp-not-toxic/

http://www.agronomy.com.au/pdf/sunnhemp.pdf
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3 yr cover
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I thought I'd better get a shot of this, a kochia that is dying from chemicals. This is a rarity.
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Listening to the global warming alarmists, one would think that man-made CO2 emissions are threatening the globe. But that's speculation. Let's deal in reality. And the reality, according to Australian research, is that in this era of higher carbon concentrations, plant life in dry regions has grown lush.

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This is the third year I have used the Haney test. This is the first year it looks like their projections of available N,P,K will pan out. We have been getting frequent rains over the last 2 weeks and the ground has been going through wetting and drying action, which releases the soils potential. When Ward predicts available nutrients, it in part is what the average rainfall for a particular area is. If conditions are right it may exceed their numbers.

This only accounts for the top 6" of soil.
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