The last in a series of five farm visits highlighting soil health goals and the variety of ways in which these goals are being realized at farms throughout the Central Valley took place at Sano Farms in Firebaugh, CA on Friday, June 24th with about forty attendees. Farm owner, Alan Sano, and farm manager, Jesse Sanchez, provided a very detailed and informative overview of the practices, equipment and principles that are being used at Sano Farms now for over ten years. These practices include the use of winter cover crop mixtures, reduced disturbance tillage that relies on the use of a cover crop roller, a chopper and a bed shaper, and subsurface drip irrigation. Benefits that have resulted from these practices include improved soil function in terms of water movement and storage, reduced costs related to tillage, and the ability to reduce fertilizer inputs while keeping high yields and crop quality.
Audience in attendance on June 23 to see work being done at Sano Farms.
Together, the practices that are now successfully employed by Sano and Sanchez, not only cut production costs, but they also reduce GHG emissions through the use of less tillage and tractor passes through the field, and they also build soil C and N, thereby removing these elements from the atmosphere and storing them in the soil.
A video summarizing the farm visit at Sano Farms is available at the You Tube link below.