Crop Rotational Diversity

A long-term cropping systems experiment, established at three geographically and meteorologically diverse locations in Minnesota, intends to provide support for decision-makers, e.g. growers and others, to make informed management decisions in the face of increasing climate uncertainty. One of the desired outcomes of the Minnesota long-term agricultural research network (LTARN) is the detection of sudden or gradual changes in plant performance or soil properties that might result from widespread agricultural practices. 

Cropping systems in the LTARN network include the current standard corn-soybean rotation along with rotations that are considered by some to be more sustainable, including corn- soybean plus cover crops, corn-soybean-wheat, and corn-alfalfa. The LTARN node at the SWROC consists of three experimental sites including what is called the “main” experiment, the “landscape” experiment and the “drainage” experiment.