August 25 Virtual Field Day: Utilizing No-till as a Moisture Management Tool

August 17, 2020

AMES, Iowa—Iowa Learning Farms, in partnership with the Iowa Nutrient Research Center, and Conservation Learning Group, is hosting a free virtual no-tillage and moisture management field day on Tuesday, August 25th at 1 p.m. CDT. Join us for a live conversation as we visit long-time no-tiller Doug Gronau’s farm in Crawford County and discuss the benefits of no-tillage, including soil moisture retention during dry conditions, with Jodi DeJong-Hughes, University of Minnesota Regional Extension Educator.

“No-till has been a key to the quality of our crops this year. According to my weather station, this summer we are 6 inches short of rain compared to our average. However, when we went to take a look a week ago in our corn fields, there was still adequate soil moisture available for the crop,” noted Doug Gronau who farms with his son near Vail in Crawford County. For nearly 20 years, they have been planting no-till corn and soybeans to help reduce soil erosion, improve soil health, and manage soil moisture. They have also implemented additional conservation practices live waterways and terraces and used cover crops since 2014 to address soil erosion and help improve water quality.

Jodi Dejong-Hughes has been a Regional Extension Educator with the University of Minnesota Extension for over 23 years. Her area of specialization includes tillage management systems, soil compaction, and soil health management. "Reducing tillage is a great way to build soil structure.  A soil with good structure will have better water infiltration, letting a field capture more of the rainfalls, and also has the ability to hold onto that water for when the crop needs it,” stated DeJong-Hughes.

To participate in the live virtual field day at 1:00 pm CDT on August 25th, click this URL: or visit and click “Join Live Virtual Field Day”.

Or, join from a dial-in phone line:

    Dial: +1 312 626 6799 or +1 646 876 9923

    Meeting ID: 914 1198 4892

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

Participants may be eligible for a Certified Crop Adviser board-approved continuing education unit (CEU). Information about how to apply to receive the credit (if approved) will be provided at the end of the live field day.

Established in 2004, Iowa Learning Farms is building a Culture of Conservation by encouraging adoption of conservation practices. Farmers, researchers and ILF team members are working together to identify and implement the best management practices that improve water quality and soil health while remaining profitable. Partners of Iowa Learning Farms include the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Iowa Department of Natural Resources (USEPA section 319) and GROWMARK, Inc.



Liz (Juchems) Ripley

Conservation Outreach Specialist