Agronomy & Soil Science research at the West Central Research and Outreach Center (WCROC) focuses on 1) conducting and cooperating in University-led applied research on plant and soil management systems that protect our environment and increase producer profitability, and 2) producing organic and conventional feedstuffs for WCROC organic and conventional livestock programs. Our primary trial crops are corn, small grains, and soybeans.
At the University of Minnesota, agronomy is based in the Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics.
Soil Management Systems
At the WCROC, nearly 50% of our crop acres are on certified organic land, largely for the purpose of supplying feed to a portion of our dairy herd. We grow corn, wheat, oats, and alfalfa.
A cover crop, also referred to as green manure, is a plant used in between rows, or may cover a field entirely in between crop rotations. Cover crops can slow soil erosion, improve soil health, add organic matter, enhance water availability, reduce soil compaction, use and store nitrogen, and aid in weed control. At the WCROC, we utilize cover crops in our fields, pastures, and our horticulture plots.
- MN Field Crop Trials are available on the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station website, which includes alfalfa, barley, oat, winter rye, canola and corn performance trial results.
- $9 corn and $21 soybeans (2016)
- Industrial Hemp Research (2017)
- Side-by-side tillage demonstration videos available from our Tillage and Technology Field Day.