Tillage Radish

As the days get longer and begin to warm up, showing signs of the upcoming summer season, I thought I’d take a moment to show you what’s happening on our farm!

Living on the river means we have an additional responsibility to be proactive in protecting our most valuable resources…our soil and our primary source of water!

One of the challenges we face is soil erosion. That occurs when the ground is bare through the heavy fall and spring rains. Water is very powerful and will always follow the path of least resistance carving out the fields as it makes its way to the river. It also takes with it the nutrients that are needed to produce our delicious sweet corn.

More than 20 years ago now, we started planting a cover crop called Tillage Radish. It has the ability to grow quickly forming a tap root like a carrot that goes as deep as the leaves on top and in some varieties, MUCH larger as in the photo! The plant holds the nutrients and the soil through the winter months and then dies off and rots leaving very little residue to inhibit spring planting but enough to prevent erosion!

Now when someone asks “What’s that growing in the Snyder’s field?” after the sweet corn season is over, you’ll be able to tell them!

Stay tuned for more of our farm stories as we journey closer to another delicious harvest!