Chris Edgington, Mitchell County

Farms: Farms corn and soybeans alongside his dad, brother and son who makes up the fourth generation

Conservation practices used: Split-applying nitrogen and reduced tillage

Value of conservation: One big thing we have noticed is that the dirt doesn't blow in the wintertime or when a lot of water is moving through. If you go to an area where there is a lot of tillage and you get a big windstorm or rainstorm, the soil moves. Our soil does not.

“Mother Nature plays a huge role in water quality, but we as farmers also have a responsibility to do our part to help resolve the issue.”

What conservation practices are you seeing in rural Iowa? There's less tillage being done, so you don't have as much erosion. Cover crops are being utilized all across the state in various areas. Strip tilling has picked up in a big way, so they're only tilling a small piece of soil and leaving the rest undisturbed. There are more terraces going in. The whole idea is to slow down the movement of water when we get an excessively large rainfall, and these practices are working.

Advice for other farmers: Talk to your neighbors, and see what they are doing. See what has worked and what has not worked on their acres. Start small and take it in steps. It's a learning process.