New York Soil Health staff helped to coordinate this year’s activities in theĀ Soil Health Center building at Empire Farm Days.

Managing for Healthier Soils and Cleaner Water – Jim Hershey, President, Pennsylvania No Till Alliance

No-till and cover crops are powerful strategies for improving soil health and crop performance in the long-term. Jim discusses how long-term no-til and cover crop usage has improved soil health, weed and pest suppression, and crop yields on his farm. Jim uses innovative sustainable soil management techniques such as planting green and inter-seeding cover crops.

Soil Health: History, Geography, and Opportunities in New York by Harold van Es, Ph.D., Cornell University Soil and Crop Sciences

Healthy soil is the foundation for sustainable crop production. Before the rise of agriculture, natural processes shaped the distribution of healthy soils. Today, humans have a large impact on where healthy soils are located through the movement of crop exports and agricultural management practices. Harold talks about the history and geography of soil health, opportunities for New York, and a recent analysis of New York soil health.


Empire Farm Days Grower Panel: Nutrient Management

A panel of three farmers answer questions and share their experience with the successes and challenges of nutrient management in no-till systems.

John Kemmeren, Angel Rose Dairy, Chenango County, NY
Dave Magos, Morning Star Farm, Jefferson County, NY
Jay Swede: Swede Family Farm, Pavilion, NY

Moderator: Paul Salon, CCA, USDA-NRCS Northeast Soil Health Specialist (Ret.)

Empire Farm Days Grower Panel: Planting Green

A panel of three farmers answer questions and share their experience with the successes and challenges of Planting Green in New York and Pennsylvania. Planting Green. Planting Green is a no-till cover crop management strategy in which a farmer plants cash crops directly into living cover crop material.

Jim Hershey, Hershey Farms, Elizabethtown, PA
John Macauley, Macauley Farms, LLC, Livingston County, NY
Donn Branton, Branton Farms, Genesee County, NY

Moderator: Bryan Lord, Carolina Eastern-Crocker, American Farmland Trust Practical Soil Health Specialist Trainee

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