Reducing Tillage to Save Fuel


Tillage operations are generally conducted to prepare a seedbed, incorporate fertilizers, and cultivate for weed control. The number of trips required to perform these operations depends on soil type and condition, the crop, weather conditions, and the type of tillage system utilized. Excessive tillage operations increase fuel consumption, operating costs, machinery wear, and time and labor requirements. Too much tillage also increases soil compaction and releases carbon into the atmosphere.

Reducing the number of field operations

Farmers can reduce …

Optimizing Field Efficiency to Save Fuel


Field efficiency means completing a particular field operation while wasting the least amount of time, fuel, and farm resources. The term refers to the time the operation should take vs. turning and other nonproductive time. For example, spending an inordinate amount of time turning around at the ends of short, wide fields or overlapping tillage operations within a field can result in higher fuel consumption per acre.

Machine maintenance and repair also affect field efficiency – equipment that is …

Subtropical Crops for Biofuel Production

Several perennial grass species, such as energycane  are being assessed for their biomass energy potential.

Energy cane research on muck soils in Florida. Photo: Extension Farm Energy.


Subtropical Perennial Grasses for Energy

Numerous subtropical and tropical perennial grasses are being evaluated for use as a biomass energy feedstock. Among them, Energycane (Saccharum spp.), giant reedgrass (Arundo donax), elephantgrass/Napier grass (Pennisetum spp.), and erianthus (…

Feedstocks for Biofuel Production

Bioenergy crop test plots

Interested in feedstock crops for biofuel energy production, but don’t know where to start? Learn about harvesting energy from sugar, starch, fiber, residues, oil and wood products.

Sweet sorghum. Photo: Dennis Pennington, Bioenergy Educator, Michigan State University.



Biomass feedstocks for energy production can result from plants grown directly for energy or from plant parts, residues, processing wastes, …