Field Days & Events

Field Days & Events Check out upcoming field days and other events that you can attend to learn about the conservation techniques.

Cover Crop Field Day
March 26 (4 p.m. – 7p.m.)
Best Western Starlite Village
1518 3 rd Ave NW
Fort Dodge, IA 50501 

Event Details: Brent Larson of Sunderman Farm Management Company will review his cover crop playbook including variety selection, crop rotation and return on investment. Get an up close look at his cover crop equipment including strip till rigs, planters, drills, a zone commander and a twin row planter which will all be on display in the parking lot of the hotel. 

Topics will include:

  • Variety selection
  • Seeding dates and rates, cover crop timeline
  • Equipment
  • Rotation and impact on cash crop
  • Return on investment, benefits

A meal will be provided. Pork loin and mashed potatoes will be catered by the Starlite Best Western hotel. Please RSVP here by March 22.
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Cover Crop and No-Till Workshop

March 26 (12 p.m. – 2 p.m.)Greene County Extension Office
104 West Washington St
Jefferson, IA 50129

Event Details: RSVP to 515-294-5429 or ilf@iastate.edu to register for this cover crop and no-till workshop.
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Cover Crop Field Day
March 27 (4 p.m. – 7 p.m.)
8718 W 109 th St South
Prairie City, IA 50228  

Event Details: We will start in the field where Will Cannon will show us the NRCS trial plot featuring a side by side comparison of cover crop varieties and application methods. Then we will move inside for dinner and a presentation of his keys to successfully incorporating cover crops into the rotation. 

Topics will include:

  • NRCS trial plot comparing different varieties and application methods
  • Winter wheat

Dinner will be provided. Please RSVP here by March 22.
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Cover Crop and Grazing Workshop
March 27 (12 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
McNay Research Farm
45249 170th Ave
Chariton, IA 50049

Event Details: Iowa Learning Farms and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will host a cover crops and grazing cover crops workshop on Wednesday, March 27th from 12:00-2:00 p.m. at the McNay Research Farm near Chariton. The event is free, open to the whole family and includes a complimentary meal.

Cover crops are gaining popularity among livestock and row crop producers thanks to the many benefits that can be achieved. These include expanded grazing and forage acres, reduced nitrogen and phosphorus loads entering water bodies, increased soil organic matter, improved soil health and reduced soil erosion.

The workshop agenda will include Rebecca Vittetoe, Iowa State Extension Field Agronomist, and Erika Lundy, Iowa State Extension Beef Specialist, highlighting an ongoing research project evaluating cattle performance while grazing cover crops, as well as subsequent impacts of grazing on the soil.  Liz Juchems, Iowa Learning Farms conservation outreach specialist, will share results from cover crop projects examining species selection, water quality implications, and soil health indicators such as earthworms. Local farmers will also share their experiences with cover crops and tips for successfully adding them to your operation. Weather permitting, attendees will tour the grazing research plots to see cattle grazing cereal rye.

The workshop will be held at the McNay Research Farm, 45249 170th Ave, Chariton. The event is free and open to the whole family, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. Please RSVP to Liz Juchems at 515-294-5429 or ilf@iastate.edu.

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Cover Crop and No-Till Workshop

March 28 (12 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
Titan Machinery (West Entrance)
3093 220th St
Williams, IA 50271

Event Details: Iowa Learning Farms and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will host a cover crop and no-till workshop on Thursday, March 28th from 12:00-2:00 p.m. at Titan Machinery near Williams. The event is free, open to the whole family and includes a complimentary meal.

The fall of 2018 was a challenge for most farmer as it started raining in early September as the corn and soybeans were maturing and continued to stay wet through harvest. With a priority on getting the crop in the field, there was limited time to complete fall tillage. However, this presents an opportunity to adapt to conservation tillage this spring and to protect the soil from erosion and improve weed control by adding a cover crop this fall.

The workshop agenda will include Brent Larson, Webster County farmer and member of the Sunderman Farm Management team, sharing his experiences with cover crops, tips for successfully adding them to your operation and working with landlords and tenants to implement conservation practices. J. Arbuckle, associate professor of Sociology, will share results from the recent landowner survey regarding conservation and water quality attitudes. Angie Rieck-Hinz, Iowa State Extension Agronomist, will provide timely advice for preparing your planter and other considerations for no-tilling corn and soybeans this spring. Liz Juchems, Iowa Learning Farms conservation outreach specialist, will share results from cover crop projects examining species selection, water quality implications, and soil health indicators such as earthworms. Doug Gass, South Skunk River Watershed Coordinator, will share updates and information about the project.

The field day will be held at the Titan Machinery, 3093 220th St, Williams, IA 50271. Attendees should plan to use the west entrance door.   The event is free and open to the whole family, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. Please RSVP to Liz Juchems at 515-294-5429 or ilf@iastate.edu.

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Cover Crop Field Day
April 2 (4 p.m. – 7 p.m.)
Starting location: We will start at the cover crop trial field, located less than 0.5 mile west of Hickory Avenue on the north side of IA Hwy 9.
Second location: 1700 350 th St
Osage, IA 50461  

Event Details: Get a first-hand view of the Fredericks’ ongoing cereal rye seeding rate and date trial. Wayne will also discuss his cover crop playbook, including planning preferences and termination methods. We’ll start in the field to view some cover crops before moving indoors for further discussion and a meal. 

Topics will include:

  • Seeding date and rate trial

A meal will be catered by S&S Locker. Please RSVP here by March 29.
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Cover Crop Field Day
April 3 (4 p.m. – 7 p.m.)
Starting location: 4449 Hickory Ave
Orange City, IA 51041
Second location: Sioux County Archery Club at Sandy Hollow Recreation Area
3413 400 th St
Sioux Center, IA 51250  

Event Details: Jon will share his recipes for success when it comes to using cover crops in corn-soybean management systems. He will also share how the Kiels are starting to grow their own cover crop seed, as well as the opportunities for using diverse cover crop mixes this strategy provides. We’ll start in the field to view some cover crops before moving indoors for further discussion and a meal. 

Topics will include:

  • How to get started with cover crops
  • Cover crop species selection
  • Cover crops in diversified crop rotations

Other Speakers:

  • Colton Meyer – watershed coordinator for the West Branch of the Floyd River Water Quality Initiative demonstration project

Supper will be provided at the Sioux County Archery Club near the end of the event. Please RSVP here by March 29.
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Cover Crop Field Day
April 4 (4 p.m. – 7 p.m.)
Starting location: 26129 Tivoli Lane
Epworth, IA 52045
Second location: Reception hall in Bankston, IA 

Event Details: The Smith family – including Jack and sons Nick and Ted – work with neighbor Tim Daly to custom-graze cover crops and corn stalks. Attendees will see fields of cereal rye that were drilled after chopping corn, fields where rye was broadcast into corn stalks and incorporated by grazing cattle, and fall-grazed oat and rye cover crops fields. We’ll start in the field to view some cover crops and discuss grazing before moving indoors for a water quality demonstration, continued conversation and a meal. 

Topics will include:

  • Custom grazing cover crops
  • Aerial, drill and broadcast seeding methods
  • Cover crops with no-till corn on corn

A catered meal will be served at the reception hall in Bankston. Please RSVP here by April 1.
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Cover Crop and Water Quality Field Day
April 9 (12 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
Rob Stout Farm
2449 Hemlock Ave
Washington, IA 52353 

Event Details: Iowa Learning Farms, in partnership with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and National Wildlife Foundation, will host a cover crops and water quality field day on Tuesday, April 9 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. at Rob Stout’s farm near Washington. The event is free, open to the whole family and includes a complimentary meal.

Cover crops are gaining popularity among farmers and landowners thanks to the many benefits that can be achieved. These include reduced nitrogen and phosphorus loads entering water bodies improving water quality, increased soil organic matter, improved soil health, reduced soil erosion and expanded grazing and forage acres.

The field agenda will include Washington County farmer Rob Stout, share his over ten years of experience with cover crops and tips for successfully adding them to your operation. Liz Juchems, Iowa Learning Farms conservation outreach specialist, will share results from cover crop projects examining species selection, water quality implications, and soil health indicators such as earthworms. Jason Steele, NRCS soil scientist will discuss the importance of healthy soil and how practices like cover crops and no-till can help reduce soil erosion and improve overall soil health. Tony Maxwell, Washington County NRCS district conservationist, will share opportunities for financial assistance for cover crops and other conservation practices. The field day will wrap up with Matt McAndrew and Paul Brandt with MB Water providing a water quality demonstration and updates on their local water quality project.

The workshop will be held at Rob Stout’s farm, 2449 Hemlock Avenue, Washington, IA 52353. From Washington, head west on 250th St/County Rd G38 for 5 miles. Turn north on Hemlock Avenue for 0.6 miles and the farm will be located on the west side of the road. The event is free and open to the whole family, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. Please RSVP to Liz Juchems at 515-294-5429 or ilf@iastate.edu
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Cover Crop and No-Till Field Day
April 10 (12 p.m. – 2 p.m.)
Steier Ag Aviation
202 190th St
Whittemore, IA 50598

Event Details: Iowa Learning Farms and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will host a cover crop and no-till field day on Wednesday, April 10 from 12:00-2:00 p.m. at Steier Ag Aviation near Whittemore. The event is free, open to the whole family and includes a complimentary meal.

The fall of 2018 was a challenge for most farmer as it started raining in early September as the corn and soybeans were maturing and continued to stay wet through harvest. With a priority on getting the crop in the field, there was limited time to complete fall tillage. However, this presents an opportunity to save money on inputs costs by implementing no-till this spring and to protect the soil from erosion and improve weed control by adding a cover crop this fall.

The workshop agenda will include Nate Voss, Kossuth County farmer, sharing his experiences with cover crops and tips for successfully adding them to your operation. Tony Meyer, Steier Ag Aviation, discussing aerial application of cover crops as a way to capture more growth in the fall. Paul Kassel, Iowa State Extension Agronomist, will provide timely advice for preparing your planter and other considerations for no-tilling corn and soybeans this spring. Liz Juchems, Iowa Learning Farms conservation outreach specialist, will share results from cover crop projects examining species selection, water quality implications, and soil health indicators such as earthworms.

The field day will be held at Steier Ag Aviation, 202 190th Street, Whittemore. The event is free and open to the whole family, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. Please RSVP to Liz Juchems at 515-294-5429 or ilf@iastate.edu.
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Webinar: Why Improving the Soil Will Pay Dividends

April 17 (12 p.m.)

Event Details: Hear from Speaker Jerry Hatfield, USDA-National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment Director and Supervisory Plant Physiologist, about why improving our soil will pay dividends. Connect to the webinar here.
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Cover Crop Field Day 
June 4 (4 p.m. – 7 p.m.)
First location: 14233 Kline Road
La Porte City, IA 50651
Second location: La Porte City Senior Nutrition
300 1 st St
La Porte City, IA 50651 

Event Details: Terry plants diverse crop rotations that include cereal rye, which he harvests to use in several ways. He’ll share his experience making ryelage, rye hay and rye straw. We’ll hear from Terry’s dairy farming neighbors, Josh and Dick Blough, who feed this ryelage to their dairy cattle. We’ll start in the field to view some cover crops before moving indoors for further discussion and a meal. 

Topics will include:

  • Harvesting ryelage
  • Making rye hay for feeding dairy heifers
  • Rye for bedding
  • Diverse crop rotations

Other Speakers:

  • Josh and Dick Blough – neighbors of Terry who feed Terry’s ryelage to their dairy cattle

Please RSVP here by May 31.