Susan Winsor


Before joining Corn and Soybean Digest, Susan was an agricultural magazine editor for Miller Publishing, a newspaper reporter for Gannett newspapers and Manager, Marketing Publications for Cenex/Land O’Lakes Ag Services. She graduated from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Journalism.

Apply Quality Control to Corn Fields for More Consistent Yields 2

Farmer and engineer Clay Mitchell troubleshoots his crop yields the same way an engineer fine-tunes any process: He identifies yield variations and then fixes the cause.

Cover Crop Interseeder 66

One pass seeds cover crops, sidedresses the corn crop and sprays weeds, at least in State College, Pa. Penn State’s cover crop experimental interseeder potentially increases profits by $100/acre in corn yields, reduced N requirements and glyphosate applications costs.

Choose Land or Efficiency? 27

How will your kids judge you on your management of today’s once in a lifetime bonanza? Ag banker and strategist Michael Swanson, Wells Fargo senior agricultural economist, worries that farmers are buying land at any price, at a big cost to future generations. He poses the questions below to farmers, as the stewards of multi-generation businesses. “These questions are about preserving future options, after the good times have gone,” he says. “Just as previous generations shepherded your business, ask yourself some questions to temper today’s sizzling once-in-a-lifetime environment.”

Profit From Soil Organic Matter 136

Will the coming "brown" revolution be as big as the green revolution? The challenge is that it's out of sight, out of mind. And that’s an expensive attitude. The invisible world of soil microbes beneath your feet convert sunlight, water, CO2 and crop residue into crop income, courtesy of the “most incredible zoo,” says Diana Wall, soil ecologist at Colorado State University.

How Buyers Buy Beans | Security of Supply, Price Trump Higher Protein

For years, we’ve heard that U.S. soybean growers risk losing market share due to low bean protein and oil content. But now, a hungry world changes market dynamics. “Things changed forever in 2006,” says Charles Hurburgh, director of the Iowa Grain Quality Initiative and Iowa State University ag engineer, describing price leaps that place overseas buyers’ focus on security of supply above bean protein levels.

Reverse Erosion 12

Do you base farm decisions on soil quality? Clay Mitchell does, as he deems it the ultimate resource. That’s why he redistributes accumulated topsoil across parts of his family’s 2,500-acre Buckingham, Iowa, corn and soybean operation. Besides building long-term soil productivity, moving surplus topsoil from valley to hilltop also boosts land value.

Clay Mitchell uses "surplus"-topsoil to take soil and move it to eroded areas.
Landscape Restoration Builds Soil Quality, Bottom Line 6

Clay Mitchell, Buckingham, Iowa, farmer and biomedical engineer spoke about using technology on the farm at the Advanced Agronomy Conference in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, on Nov. 19. Mitchell moved valuable topsoil from grass waterways, where silt accumulated, to areas lacking in topsoil. With a goal of 8 in. topsoil depth across most areas, he scraped topsoil from “surplus”-topsoil areas (such as along grass waterways).

Space Age Sidedressing Ties N Dose to Weather | New Online Tool Brings New Accuracy Level to N Prescriptions 258

You can’t control the weather, but you can now manage your N as weather changes. The same computer modeling technology guiding NASA, engineers and doctors can now assess your crop’s N needs every 24 hours.

Healthy Soil and Profits from Low-Till 15

Strip-till saved Ed Hegland so much fuel that his fuel supplier thought he’d switched suppliers, says the Appleton, Minn., grower. “The switch from full-width tillage cut our fuel use roughly in half,” he says.

Rye is His Chisel Plow | It Builds Organic Matter, Anchors Soil 2

Looking back 171 years to when his farm was first surveyed, Iowa farmer Steve Berger knows “we've lost half the organic matter in soils. Today’s fencerows are one indicator on our farm, as they test 5.8% and 6.6% organic matter versus 3.4% and 3.7% just a few inches away.

Coming To a Field Near You: Nitrogen Reduction Credits 19

You can soon earn credits for reduced fertilizer application if you prove it reduces nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions, which are a potent greenhouse gas. That could be a big "if."

Be Soil Savvy While Tilling, Tiling 4

Dave Legvold is soil savvy. When he picks up a new piece of ground, he initiates a standard transition process to decrease compaction and improve soil structure to build productivity. The Northfield, MN, farmer’s newest silty clay loam field had been poorly drained and conventionally tilled before this spring.

New Holland Introduces New Tractors, Combines, Tracks, Features 1

New Holland Agriculture, long known for its hay and forage equipment, continues to expand its row-crop 4WD tractor and combine offerings. It was recognized for innovative design and performance offerings in 2011 by AE50 awards from the prestigious American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

What Happens if the Soybean Farmer's Biggest Customer is More Regulated or Moves Offshore?

Regulations on our biggest customer – the U.S. livestock industry – could add more than $16.8 billion annually to U.S. consumers’ grocery bill. So says a study funded by the United Soybean Board (USB) if regulations are imposed on U.S. poultry and livestock sectors that raise input costs by 25%, the study finds.

How to Curb Goss Loss | Prevention is Main Tool in Dodging Goss’s Wilt 1

Bill Curran has devoted 18 years to a mystery that’s new to many of us. As lead scientist for Pioneer’s LaSalle, CO, Goss’s wilt hybrid development and screening program, he preaches prevention because there is no remedy.

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