Learn More About the Soil Health Principles

Minimize Soil Disturbance

Limiting soil disturbing activities – including physical, chemical and biological disturbances -protects soil structure and function and can enhance the biological components of soil life.

Maximize Living Roots

Keeping plants growing for as much of the year as possible fuels biological activity, aids in nutrient cycling, and contributes to improved soil structure.

Energize with Diversity

Using a diversity of crop species in the field and throughout the landscape contributes to biological diversity above and below ground,  enhances soil function, and benefits the whole farm system.

Keep Soil Covered

Leaving crop residue on the surface, or applying organic materials such as leaves or straw, helps protect the soil from erosion, buffers soil temperature, slows runoff from rainfall, and aids in both water infiltration and moisture retention.

Integrate Livestock Where Possible

Introducing livestock into cropping systems, or managing perennial pasture or forage with animals, can enhance the biological component of the soil, build organic matter by promoting below ground biomass, and aid in nutrient cycling.

HOW do farmers join the Million Acre Challenge?

Filling out a self-assessment survey enrolls farmers in the challenge and gives them access to tools to track their progress toward healthy soils knowledge and management.

Tiers of Regeneration

The Million Acre Challenge welcomes farms of all sizes and production methods to accept the challenge of advancing their land on the spectrum of soil health!


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Soil Health Hubs

Regional Soil Health Hubs are where growers meet with each other to explore practices, strategies, and opportunities to make farmland more profitable and resilient through healthier soil.


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Farmer Stories

We know every farmer, like every farm, is unique. These spotlights feature farmers of all backgrounds across the Chesapeake region – those with different farm sizes, production methods, and farming traditions.


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