Document Type


Publication Version

Version of Record

Publication Date



Adoption decisions, Diversified crop rotations, Livestock, Organic farming, Perceived benefits


Monoculture and simplified two-crop rotation systems compromise the ecosystem services essential to crop production, diminish agricultural productivity, and cause detrimental effects on the environment. In contrast to the simplified two-crop rotation, diversified crop rotation (DCR) refers to rotation systems that contain three or more crops. Despite multiple benefits generated by DCR, its usage has dwindled over the past several decades. This paper examined determinants of farmers' adoption decisions and perceived benefits of DCR in the west margins of the U.S. Corn Belt where crop diversity has declined. We analyzed 708 farmer responses from a farmer survey conducted in the eastern South Dakota in 2018, accounting for county-level climate variables, as well as cropland data, soil and topographic variables in close proximity of the farm. Our findings indicated that farmers were more likely to utilize DCR as an adaptive strategy to cope with water deficit and reduce soil erosion on marginal land. Additionally, livestock integration and organic farming helped necessitate DCR adoption and magnify its benefits. Producer concerns towards lack of equipment and new crop profitability diluted producers’ interests in DCR practice and compromised its benefits. Enhanced technical and policy support, along with infrastructure and market development, could help producers fully utilize DCR benefits and expand DCR usage to more regions.

Publication Title

Journal of Environmental Management



DOI of Published Version





© 2021 The Authors.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License.