National tour features latest conservation ag ideas
Agriculture equipment demonstrations, expert insight and timely topics are all part of a national tour coming to central Illinois in July. Those interested in participating can register online. Early registration ends June 12.
The Conservation Technology Information Center’s (CTIC) 2013 Conservation in Action Tour will take place July 9-10 at several sites around Livingston County, Illinois. Area producers and regional experts will share conservation success stories with a diverse audience of agriculture leaders, including farmers, crop advisers, regulators and lawmakers, from more than 20 states.
“Because our audience is so diverse and brings such a variety of perspectives and experiences, the dialogue that happens throughout the tour is always unique and beneficial,” said Karen A. Scanlon, executive director of the Conservation Technology Information Center (CTIC) in West Lafayette, Ind. “The tour gives the audience the chance to interact with others and to get up close to soil and equipment. Our goal is to give each attendee new information or new contacts that they can use to advance conservation in their own community.”
The tour stops first at the Bachtold Farm to discuss soil health. Four sessions feature crop and livestock producers discussing topics related to soil health.
- Participants can examine a soil pit for an up-close look at cover crop roots with Roger Windhorn, a soil scientist with the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), and local producer Ken Lehman.
- Dan Towery and Hans Kok of the Conservation Cropping Systems Initiative and area producers Greg and Ryan Myers will discuss no-till and soil core comparisons.
- Mike Plumer, a retired University of Illinois Extension natural resources educator and researcher and renowned cover crop consultant, along with local producer Daniel Steidinger, will share insight on cover crop varieties, challenges and benefits to soil.
- Terry Bachtold, Paul Youngstrum and Lori Younker of the NRCS, and a local veterinarian will discuss prescribed grazing and animal health.
- Local producers Tim McGreal, John Traub and Marcus Maier will share their conservation systems stories and answer audience questions.
The session at the Bachtold farm also will feature a GreenSeeker demonstration on a corn plot. GreenSeeker is a monitoring device that is attached to a tractor and measures the nitrogen in corn by evaluating the color of the crop in the field. Using these results, producers can more accurately apply the amount of nitrogen needed by the growing crop.