Improving soil health is one of the best ways to increase crop productivity and profitability and help improve the environment. A good measurement of soil health is the level of organic matter in your soils. The 1% challenge was developed in 2017 by Brad Harrison with the Dallas County NRCS. Producers participating in the 1% challenge pledge to increase their organic matter by 1% over 10 years. Using as many of the 5 key soil health principles below is a good start!

  • Keep the soil covered as much as possible
  • Disturb the soil as little as possible
  • Keep plants growing throughout the year to feed the soil
  • Incorporate grazing when possible
  • Diversify using crop rotations and cover crops

If you are interested in learning more about soil health or participating in the challenge contact your local NRCS office or visit the website below.


Many streams at 4-10 times wider than they were prior to pioneer settlement