A three-year pilot program will have “cover crops” planted in more than a dozen locations in Illinois. Cover crops are grasses or plants in or adjacent to fields which try to help the ecology by, among other things, preventing runoff. They also are believed to increase yields. Gov. Pat Quinn announced the program Tuesday at the Farm Progress Show in Decatur.
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“I think it’s important that we have 21st Century agriculture,” he said. The crops “help increase productivity of the land and help keep soil on the land. God has blessed us with some of the most fertile soil on planet Earth.” Experts say cover crop techniques have advanced over the last 20 to 30 years to reduce some of the problems farmers experienced.