I spent the morning and much of the afternoon tromping across 120 acres of possible rental land coming out of CRP. I was trying to investigate the possibilities for a cow calf herd being maintained there.The whole experience was difficult in the snow melt and through the volunteer trees and brush, but there are some things to be happy about. One of these, though, was not when I happened upon the southwest perimeter, a high steep knoll sloping down toward an occasional creek behind me. We had already told the owner we would rent the land for grazing only, that it was not suitable for row cropping and to do so would be wrong. Looking down from my perch on the knoll, across the property line, I could see the effect of corn cropping on inappropriate land. There was a six foot drop off from the perimeter to the tilled corn field and the soil on the corn field was completely yellow in that location. The topsoil that should have been there, and was there on my side, due to the CRP use, was gone on the other side, run to the bottom and the creek that drains it. Perhaps five feet deep on the near side to a foot down to the yellow on the far side and a width of seventy five feet and more. Tons and tons of valuable black soil, gone forever. As a farmer, I was sick looking at it
This is on us, both us farmers who have forgotten how to be farmers and the politicians who aid and abet our view of ourselves as economic animals only, with no agriCULTURE anywhere to be found.