Implement conservation tillage, reduced tillage, or No-Till farming
Traditional tilling involves digging, overturning and mixing the soil. It helps break up the soil's crust, making it easier to plant and add inputs to the soil. But tilling can disrupt the soil’s natural health, remove nutrients and limit its ability to capture carbon. Conservation tillage is aimed at controlling the amount and distribution of crop residue on the soil's surface to protect and nourish it without requiring as many inputs. And the various types of conservation tillage actually help the soil draw more carbon from the atmosphere to combat climate change.
There are many different types of conservation tillage, but the two primary types of tillage associated with regenerative agriculture are no-till (or zero tillage) and reduced tillage systems.
Using no-till farming to manage the organic matter left on fields can provide agronomic, economic and environmental benefits to farmers, including reduced erosion, more consistent soil temperature, less rainfall compaction, improved water quality and better soil health – and it can even help farmers save on fuel costs.
Reduced tillage is a less intense, shallower depth of tillage, or a less frequent tillage. It still helps manage weeds, makes better seed beds and incorporates residues like traditional tillage, but because it disturbs the soil less, it helps improve overall soil health.