Keep the Stubble

Allison Arp

Allison Arp

Iowa Soybean Association

No-till, an important sustainability practice for U.S. soybean farmers, just took its turn in the spotlight.

During a special month-long campaign called “No Tillage November,” the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and its partners encouraged Iowa farmers to keep tillage equipment parked in their machine sheds this fall.

The project is mirrored after “No Shave November,” a phenomenon in the U.S. which encourages people to retire their razors for the month to spark conversation and raise awareness of men’s cancers. The goal of No-Shave November is to grow awareness by embracing hair, which many cancer patients lose, letting it grow, and donating the money typically spent on shaving and grooming to educate about cancer prevention and aid those fighting cancer.

In a similar vein, the NRCS campaign encourages farmers to “keep the stubble” on their harvested crop fields to increase biological activity in the soil and boost underground nutrients.

Lindsey Foss, ISA public relations manager, co-authored this story.


Tom Oswald, a USB director and ISA member and retired director from Cleghorn, examines the soil conditions in one of his fields. Oswald has been a long-time proponent of no-till conservation methods during his farming career. (Photo: Joseph Murphy/Iowa Soybean Association)