Brian InmanCamden, TN

Brian Inman

Camden, Tenn.

Brian Inman farms predominately in Benton County, Tenn., and has a few acres in Decatur County, Tenn. Inman started farming with his dad as a boy and teenager and now farms 2,500 acres of corn and soybeans with his brother Wade.

The Inman brothers started experimenting with no-till in the 1990s,  converting from tillage to no-till due to reduced labor, easier planting with more moisture and reduced erosion.

Inman conducts soil samples every three years by grouping his soils and running Veris Electrical conductivity measurements. He applies phosphorus, potassium and lime by variable rates and for corn, he applies starter fertilizer.

Inman farms near the Tennessee River, where soils range from slightly sloping to sloping and contain some gravel. Inman’s Cox farm has been no-tilled for 25 years now, with the brothers beginning to experiment with planting wheat and crimson clover cover crops in 2012. In 2017, they began using a multi-species mix, using a spinner truck to broadcast the cover crops, usually in mid-September after corn and mid-October after soybeans.

On the Cox farm, Inman tweaked his no-till technique and noticed better yields in the dry seasons. He normally plants corn in mid-April, usually 14-21 days after termination of cover crops, and rolls and crimps one area of one field where rye became excessively high. The farm, which abuts the Tennessee River, receives intense rains, which have been gaining intensity in recent years. Inman credits cover crops and no-till with keeping the soil and the crop from being lost under so much moisture.

Inman notes through good soil health practices, his soils retain moisture, are full of good earthworm activity, and by having continuous plant growth with growing roots, have improved soil structure with no compaction. By doing no-till, Inman notices less drought stress on soybeans, and the soil is easier to plant. No-till also helped increase earthworm casts, better water infiltration, and reduce erosion.

Learn more about Inman’s operation on his Soil Health Hero profile.

Updated May 2019.

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