Sen. Michael Bennet, Democrat candidate for president, paid a visit to the Growing Harmony Farms near Nevada on Sunday. He was hosted by Nancy, Gary and Frank Guthrie. Bennet was primarily there to see the prairie strips the Guthries have in their fields.
The Guthries were among the first to try this new farming technique that helps soil preservation. Called STRIPS, which stands for Science-based Trials of Rowcrops Integrated with Prairie Strips, the project is composed of a team of scientists, educators, farmers and Extension specialists working on the prairie strips farmland conservation practice.
According to Extension, their research shows that prairie strips are an affordable option for farmers and farm landowners seeking to garner multiple benefits. By converting 10 percent of a crop field to diverse, native perennials, farmers and farmland owners can reduce the amount of soil leaving their fields by 90 percent and the amount of nitrogen leaving their fields through surface runoff by up to 85 percent. Prairie strips also provide potential habitat for wildlife, including pollinators and other beneficial insects.