Iowa Learning Farms, in partnership with the Iowa Nutrient Research Center, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach and Conservation Learning Group, will present a virtual field day on Thursday, February 3 at 1 p.m. CST. Join us for a live conversation with Dr. Adam Janke, extension wildlife specialist and assistant professor, Iowa State University, and Dr. Mark Licht, extension cropping systems specialist and assistant professor, Iowa State University.
A project led by Licht, and funded by North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, is working with four Iowa farmers to convert marginal land areas prone to flooding to perennial vegetation to evaluate the profitability and explore the potential benefits to water quality, soil health, wildlife habitat and overall aesthetics. This virtual field day highlights the steps needed to successfully establish and manage the vegetation to maximize the benefits.
“It’s important to not get discouraged when establishing perennial vegetation. It takes time and patience to get them going,” noted Janke. “Unlike corn and soybeans that farmers are used to, perennial vegetation puts most of its energy in the first years into growing extensive root systems instead of above-ground biomass. So proper management in the first years is critical to make sure the area doesn’t get overrun with weeds and become a problem area.”
Participants in Iowa Learning Farms virtual field days are encouraged to ask questions of the presenters. People from all backgrounds and areas of interest are encouraged to join.
The field day will be recorded and archived on the ILF website so that it can be watched at any time. The archive will be available at https://www.iowalearningfarms.org/virtual-field-day-archive.
Participants will be eligible for a Certified Crop Adviser board-approved continuing education unit (CEU). Information about how to apply to receive the credit will be provided at the end of the live field day.