Search results

FAQ: Why would I plant prairie strips on my farm?

Why would I plant prairie strips on my farm?

Prairie strips are a new conservation practice that deliver enormous soil, water and nutrient benefits while increasing wildlife habitat. Prairie strips:

FAQ: Will prairie strips help increase my crop yield?

Will prairie strips help increase my crop yield?

To date, we’ve seen no effects of prairie strips on yields in adjacent cropped areas. Of course, converting cropland to prairie strips will reduce the amount of land that is cropped. Payments for prairie strips from federal conservation programs and other sources can help offset this cost.

FAQ: Will prairie strips help pollinators?

Will prairie strips help pollinators?

Prairie strips provide both abundant and diverse flowering plants to agricultural landscapes, which are essential for supporting honey bees and conserving wild bees and butterflies. Flowers provide critical food resources for these insects: nectar for adult bees and butterflies, and pollen for the young bees. Furthermore, a growing body of scientific literature indicates that bee health is improved when they are provided a diverse diet of plants.

FAQ: Will prairie strips eliminate erosion completely?

Will prairie strips eliminate erosion completely? Do I still need grass waterways once I plant prairie strips?

Prairie strips will not completely eliminate erosion, and you may still need grass waterways. Data from our initial work at Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge has shown that prairie strips can dramatically reduce sediment loss from the field, but there are still signs of in-field erosion, especially along the fall line of the watershed where a grass waterway could be quite effective.

FAQ: What are prairie strips?

What are prairie strips?

Prairie strips are a conservation practice that uses strategically placed native prairie plantings in crop fields.

The practice was developed and tested by the STRIPS (Science-based Trials of Rowcrops Integrated with Prairie Strips) team at the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge in Iowa.

FAQ: How are prairie strips different from contour buffers and grass strips?

How are prairie strips different from contour buffers and grass strips?

Contour buffers are typically planted with fixed widths. In contrast, we vary the width of the prairie strips based on the amount of water they intercept, with the goal of treating all of the runoff leaving the crop field. Where more water is flowing down-slope, prairie strips should be wider, and where less water is flowing down-slope, the strips can be narrower.

The types of plants used for conservation buffers and filter strips can affect how they function. For example,

FAQ: Are prairie strips only for organic operations?

Are prairie strips only for organic operations?

Prairie strips are a conservation tool that can be used in both conventional and organic farming operations. In conventional farming operations, precision herbicide management is useful. Native forbs (i.e., wildflowers) in the prairie strips are broadleaf plants and can be damaged or even killed by direct contact with herbicide. Once established, native grasses and forbs have deep root systems that help create a durable, resilient plant community.

Pages