No-till Producer, Venango, NE
Steve Tucker spent his childhood moving from city to city as the son of an Air Force Recruiter. Each summer he would make his way to the family farm in Southwest Nebraska to work with his grandfather. After High School, Steve attended the University of Nebraska where he received a BS in Agronomy. He returned to the farm to take over the family operation where he now resides with his wife and four children.
When he returned from college, the farm was strictly a wheat and summer fallow operation. Economics of the day dictated that ecofallow corn was a possible viable crop. Steve also began to add proso millet and no-till into the operation. After seeing the effectiveness and efficiency of these ever changing farming practices, additional crops were then added to diversify the rotation. Sunflowers, hay millet, oats and the recent addition of field peas are now part of the farms no-tillage rotation.
The transition of the farm to move away from the tried and true methods of tillage to a complete no-till system was not easy. Adding new technology comes with a steep learning curve. Making changes in the farming methods that existed some 70 years can be trying. Steve studied and experimented along with is grandfather to find methods that worked on the farm that only averages 14 inches of moisture a year. It didn't take long to see that no-till farming practices were going to help increase efficiency, soil quality, reduce erosion and increase the bottom line on dryland as well as under irrigation.
Over the past few years, a new venture has begun with the drastic increase in acres of yellow field peas in the central high plains region. Steve has diversified to supply this market with high quality yellow field peas with the introduction of AgriForce Seed. Steve and his partner Jeff Olsen offer several varieties of certified peas, winter wheat, Golden German hay millet, and forage pea/oat hay blends in addition to a wide selection of inoculants.
Steve is passionate about learning and discussing the changes that are occurring in agriculture. He is an advocate for the future in agriculture, helping to spread the word that there are different ways to achieve sustainability for the future. Reducing tillage, promoting soil heath, farm efficiency and helping others change their paradigms in regards to these issues are the core of what Steve speaks to as he works to help shape tomorrow.