Bob and I were back on the home farm in Maryland last week to celebrate Dad's birthday and help a little here and there. For his birthday, Dad wanted us all to attend the Cecil County Soil Conservation annual banquet. It was a yummy dinner of crab cakes and prime rib, enjoyed by a sold-out crowd of 250 farmers and agribusiness people.
The best part of the evening was the showcase of conservation projects completed and underway on farms in the county. Maryland farmers are under a microscope to keep water clean for the Chesapeake Bay. Dad has been using terraces, cover crops, and no-till on his fruit farm for decades. He was honored as the county conservation farmer in 1983. It's been his life-long passion to farm responsibly, respecting soil and water.
Iowa, where I live now, is starting to deal with water quality issues as tile lines run black topsoil to the river. Many farmers and farm groups are on the defensive, but others are embracing cover crops and more. Let's keep it going.