Date of this Version



© 1979, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


Wind erosion is a serious hazard on millions of acres of land in the United States, most of which are in the Great Plains.

There are a number of things an individual can do control wind erosion but basically they all point to accomplishing one or more of the following objectives:

1. Reduce the wind velocity at the soil surface. This is done with windbreaks, crop residues, cover crops, surface roughness, and wind stripcropping.

2. Trap soil particles. This is accomplished by ridging or roughening the soil surface to trap moving soil particles.

3. Increase size of soil aggregates. This is accomplished by using crop rotations that include grasses and legumes, by growing high-residue crops and returning crop residues to the soil, and by emergency tillage, which creates clods on the soil surface. Increasing the size of aggregates means that it takes a stronger wind to move the soil.

Factors that affect the quantity of wind erosion that takes place include soil erodibility, soil ridge roughness, climate and weather, the unsheltered distance across a field along the prevailing wind erosion direction, and residue or vegetative cover.