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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: Bucking The Tillage Trend In An Alpine Desert

No-till practices are saving Colorado grower Billy Burns’ soils, and even helping his fields recover from a tragic herbicide mistake.

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NAME: Billy and Sadie Burns

LOCATION: Hooper, Colo.

YEARS NO-TILLING: 6

ACRES: 460

CROPS: Alfalfa, cereal rye, alfalfa-grass mix and mixed forage

As no-tillers we are definitely an oddity here in the highly productive San Luis Valley of Colorado. While we strive to keep our acres covered and undisturbed, the farmers surrounding us move masses of earth with every crop.

The San Luis Valley is truly unique. The sandy, pancake-flat alpine valley…

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Martha Mintz

Since 2011, Martha has authored the highly popular “What I’ve Learned About No-Till” series that has appeared in every issue of No-Till Farmer since August of 2002.


Growing up on a cattle ranch in southeastern Montana, Martha is a talented ag writer and photographer who lives with her family in Billings, Montana.

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