Current events have made decisions around crop options very difficult this spring. Field peas are an option that may have a fit for some producers.
Spring is a busy time for South Dakota farmers and ranchers with planting, calving, and other field preparations. Soil sampling and fertilizing pastures, alfalfa, or other forages might be overlooked.
The most common type of pea in American gardens is the shelling pea, also called the “garden pea” or “English pea.” Tender, sweet peas are removed from thin, tough pods before eating.
Alfalfa weevil populations are high this year, creating challenges for producers. Questions have arisen on how to get some value out of the forage by grazing it rather than putting it up for hay.
A combination of tillage, no residue, and lack of crop canopy can lead to severe erosion and topsoil loss in the face of extreme weather patterns in the spring. The most effective strategy for producers to adapt to these extreme events is to improve soil health.
Dry field peas and lentils are high in protein and fiber, have a low glycemic index, are easy to prepare, store well, and are low in cost. Even better they can be produced economically and sustainably in South Dakota as part of diverse no-till crop production systems.
Fall cover crops provide multiple benefits to producers. These benefits include pathogen and pest protection, drought protection, weed control, reduced soil erosion, nutrient acquisition and retention, increased soil organic matter, and conservation of soil water by improvement of soil structure that increases infiltration and water holding capacity.
As the name implies, micro-greens are grown only for a short time before they are harvested, usually only for about three weeks!
Everyone has heard the fairytale “Baa Baa Black Sheep Have You Any Wool?” but what about the double-coated California Red, the multi-colored Katahdin sheep with hair, or the East Friesian dairy ewe that produces over 1,100 pounds of milk a year? Sheep come in different shapes, sizes, and colors and all of them provide different functions and uses for producers. These can range from meat, wool, and milk production or a combination of characteristics.