Cover crops and conservation

I’ve been thinking a lot about cover crops and conservation his week while putting together a blog piece on the topic. And then I spot this very thoughtful comment from my friend Bill Bartels:

When we conserve it is from a position of limited amount.  “We Conserve…”  When we foster sustainable system, we conserve from a position of process, collaboration, and outcome that allows the continuance of a system or community.  In that, I am wondering is conservation is the right place to stand?  The land demands complexity to remain productive and healthy.  So, in fact, are we fostering complexity?  That is an interesting definition of conservation.

Admirable though conservation is, isn’t it just a nice way to describe postponing the eventual depletion of a resource? Doesn’t that seem to be setting the bar a little low? With respect to our cover crop program, I know our goal is to build soil, not conserve it. I’m still going to write this other piece, but since Bill framed the issue  so well, I felt compelled to share his insight.

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