A field day highlighting new technologies that can be incorporated in no-till and conventional production will be held Wednesday, August 20, on the Evenstad Farm just east of Belmont on County Hwy G. The program will run from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. with lunch served at noon.
The Evenstads are experimenting with nitrogen levels on a field size scale in their no-till production and their study will provide the background for topics to be covered. Dr. Carrie Laboski, UW-Extension Soils Specialist, will explain how maximum return to nitrogen is determined in the Evenstad study and she will discuss the crop sensing technology that is being evaluated as part of this study. Crop sensing is being studied to determine the accuracy of using crop color to assess nitrogen status and N fertilizer need. The equipment used to apply the range of nitrogen levels studied across the field will be on display.
Dr. Brian Luck, UW-Extension Precision Ag Specialist, will be discussing remote sensing and the sensing technology that is available to farmers. Remote sensing uses color or visible wavelengths and undetectable wavelengths to asses crop condition and help identify nutrient deficiencies, disease problems and weed infestations. This technology will help in treating only affected areas in time to remedy the problem and reduce yield loses. Dr. Luck will also address precision ag technologies that improve equipment control, and the impact this technology has on production management.
Tim Youngquist, Iowa State University Agricultural Specialist, will be discussing his research on prairie buffer strips as an alternative to traditional sod buffers. Prairie buffers can help reduce sediment movement off the field which can be reduced by as much as 95 percent, while phosphorus loss can be reduced by 90 percent and total nitrogen loss by nearly 85 percent.
The public is welcome to attend this field day. Please call the Grant County Extension Office at 608-723-2125 or the Lafayette County Extension Office at 608-776-4820 to register for this event. This program is being presented at no charge but registering will help the Extension Office determine food and refreshment needs. Call Ted Bay at either Extension office if you have questions about this event.