Successful Farming: Carl Zimmerman in Earlville, Illinois, farms 1,600 acres of corn and soybeans on land that his father began farming in 1966.

Over time, the Zimmermans have increased their acres (his father started with 350), raised cattle and hogs, and built up the soil through cover crops and no-till management.

“What got us started with cover crops was growing sweet corn. Eight years ago, we decided to plant oats to help combat weed issues on about 120 to 160 of those acres,” Zimmerman explains. “Over the years, we gained more trust in cover crops and got by with less tillage.”

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