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Wows and Woes of Diversifying with Cover Crops and Small Grains
June 19 @ 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Arlyn and Sue Kauffman, of Kauffman Structures, will host a Practical Farmers of Iowa field day about their experience adding cover crops and small grains to their farm on Tuesday, June 19, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at their farm near Weldon (25186 Popcorn Road, about 3 miles south of town).
The event – “Wows and Woes of Diversifying with Cover Crops and Small Grains” – is free to attend and includes a lunch after the discussion. RSVPs are requested for the meal to Debra Boekholder, firstname.lastname@example.org or (515) 232-5661, by Wednesday, June 13. This field day is sponsored by Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance and Grain Millers.
This event is part of Practical Farmers’ main 2018 field day season, which includes 40 events across the state, and beyond, on topics spanning the agricultural spectrum.
Arlyn and Sue farm about 250 acres of crops near Weldon, including corn, soy, alfalfa and several small grains while aiming for 100 percent cover crop coverage on row crop acres. They are especially excited about warm-species cover crops following small-grains harvest, for soil amendment and grazing. They also raise cage-free, non-GMO eggs from 20,000 layers.
This field day will explore the benefits and challenges of cover crops, especially focusing on corn production following rye and the challenges of seedling diseases. Other topics include: adding wheat, rye and triticale into a cropping system, and the benefits and challenges of sharing labor and machinery with family.
Alison Robertson, a professor of plant pathology and microbiology at Iowa State University, will give a presentation to attendees on the research her lab has conducted to understand the role of seedling disease in yield drag, and discuss best management strategies to reduce disease.
Guests will also learn about incorporating small grains production into traditional crop rotations, and the unique cover crop opportunities this provides. Following lunch, guests are invited to stay for a tour of the depopulated layer facility.