Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has served as editor of No-Till Farmer since the publication was launched in November of 1972. Raised on a six-generation Michigan Centennial Farm, he has spent his entire career in agricultural journalism. Lessiter is a dairy science graduate from Michigan State University.

ARTICLES

Travis Forstbauer Cover Crop Flooding

Cover Crops Held Soil in Place During Massive Western Canada Floods

When an unprecedented storm sent floodwaters rushing across Travis Forstbauer’s fields, the Chilliwack, British Columbia, farmer was concerned that he would lose the precious fertile soil that his livelihood depends on. Instead, the western Canadian grower was pleasantly surprised that his land had suffered minimal damage, thanks to his cover crops.


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From the Desk of Frank Lessiter

Covers Keep Weeds in Check

When growers talk about the benefits of cover crops, the talk normally centers around erosion control, keeping nutrients in the field, improving soil quality and trimming fertilizer purchases. But effective weed control is another benefit.
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Frank Comments

The New $867 Billion Farm Bill Includes Benefits for No-Tilling, Strip-Tilling, Terminating Cover Crops, Improving Soil Health and Sequestering More Carbon

While much has been written on the economic aspects of the 2018 Farm Bill, the legislation included a number of items of special interest to no-tillers. Probably the most important one is new language specifically defining the rules for cover crop termination.
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If Lawmakers Were to Say ‘Yes,’ Your History with No-Till, Cover Crops and Rotations Could Slice Insurance Costs by $4.50 Per Acre

Passage of a unique concept that got Congressional consideration during the writing of the 2018 Farm Bill could put more dollars in the pockets of no-tillers. It’s an idea that farmers who use no-till, cover crops and conservation-minded crop rotations to protect the soil should be rewarded with an equivalent of auto insurance’s “good driver discount” when it comes to paying crop insurance premiums.
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Same Old Conservation Ideas, Just New Words to Describe Them

While there’s increasing emphasis on “sustainable agriculture” and “soil health,” these four buzzwords tend to ruffle the feathers of veteran no-tillers and others like myself who have followed the no-till movement for nearly a half century. It’s because we recognize that earlier generations of no-tillers were the original true innovators behind these “not-so-new” concepts that go back to the 1960s.
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Join top strip-tillers, agronomists and researchers for 2 days of unrivaled learning and networking!

Attend the 2022 National Strip-Tillage Conference in Iowa City, Iowa, July 28-29, and discover cutting-edge ideas, techniques and strategies from the most innovative, forward-thinking minds in strip-till to raise your level of strip-till profitability, efficiency and efficacy. 

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