CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s crop scientists, interns and students harvested corn at the Morrow Plots last week.

Officials said the harvested corn continues the tradition of crop research that has been held at the site since 1876. The effort was led by Allen Parrish, director of Crop Sciences Research Centers with help from crop sciences professor Andrew Margenot.

According to officials, research on the plots was instrumental in gaining knowledge on crop rotation, soil nutrient depletion and the effects of synthetic and natural fertilizers. With crops being consistently grown in the same place for over 100 years, research and records on the Morrow Plots continue to provide valuable information for a variety of topics, including soil carbon sequestration, the long-term effects of crop rotation and nutrient management on soil microbes and soil health. Corn, soybeans and other crops are still grown on the plots to this day.

The Morrow Plots were established in 1876 and are the oldest experimental crop field in the Americas. They are now protected as a National Historic Landmark.

Check out some photos from this event: