AMES, Iowa—Iowa Learning Farms, in partnership with the Indian Creek Soil Health Partnership, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, and Linn County, will host a cover crop field day on Wednesday, August 14 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Marion Airport. The event is free, open to the whole family and includes a complimentary meal.
Cover crops continue to grow in popularity in Iowa due to their many benefits including reduced nitrogen and phosphorus loads entering water bodies, increased soil organic matter and reduced soil erosion. To take advantage of the benefits cover crops can provide, now is the time to start planning for fall seeding of cover crops.
The field day will feature several topics and speakers. Linn County farmer, Jason Russell will share his experiences with cover crops and how he has successfully integrated them into his farming operation. Rebecca Vittetoe, Iowa State University Extension Field Agronomist, will share tips on cover crop establishment and integrating cover crops into an operation as well as considerations for grazing cover crops. John Thompson of Thompson Aero will be on hand with one of his planes to discuss aerial seeding of cover crops. There will also be a drill on site for those interested in drilling cover crops. Emery Davis, Indian Creek Soil Health Coordinator, will highlight the partnership and offer opportunities to get involved. The Conservation Station rainfall simulator will provide a demonstration of the impact that different land management choices, including cover crops, have on infiltration and water quality.
The field day will be held at the Marion Airport, 1690 Marion Airport Rd, Marion. The event is free and open to the whole family, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food sponsored by Linn Coop. Please RSVP to Emery Davis at 319-377-5960 Ext 3 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Iowa Learning Farms field days and workshops as well as the Indian Creek Soil Health Partnership are supported by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.
The Indian Creek Watershed drains 93 square miles of agricultural land and suburban and urban development within Linn County. Portions of Alburnett, Robins, Hiawatha and Cedar Rapids and nearly all of the City of Marion are located in the watershed. Partners of the Indian Creek Watershed Management Authority and supporters of the Indian Creek Soil Health Partnership include: the Cities of Marion, Robins, Hiawatha, and Cedar Rapids, Linn County, Linn County Soil and Water Conservation District, and East Central Iowa Council of Government. To learn more visit www.indiancreekwma.org.
Established in 2004, Iowa Learning Farms is building a Culture of Conservation by encouraging adoption of conservation practices. Farmers, researchers and ILF team members are working together to identify and implement the best management practices that improve water quality and soil health while remaining profitable. Partners of Iowa Learning Farms include the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, Iowa Natural Resources Conservation Service, Iowa Department of Natural Resources (USEPA section 319) and GROWMARK, Inc. For more information about Iowa Learning Farms, visit www.iowalearningfarms.org.