On Data and Reverie: A Farmer and Writer-in-Residence at the KBS LTER

Erin Schneider, farmer writer in residence at KBS. A blooming redbud tree flashed a profusion of pink outside the large windows in the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station’s Terrace Room. Inside, vases of freshly-picked plants spiffed up the small tables set around the room: milkweed, wood sorrel, garlic mustard, purple dead nettle, dame’s rocket, and motherwort. The bouquets were more than decoration; they were little collections of inspiration from a week spent exploring the lands, people and research at the W.K. Kellogg Biological Station. Self-described “people, plants and dirt-lover” Erin

KBS LTER synthesis book published

As spring approaches, thousands of farmers across the Midwest are preparing for planting, knowing well the importance of their work in supplying society with food. They may be less aware of the potential for their row crops to provide a host of additional benefits, including clean water, habitat for beneficial insects such as pollinators, and even climate change mitigation. Agriculture’s role in providing such benefits has been the subject of over 25 years of research at the Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) in southwest Michigan. With long-term support from the National Science Foundation and