Iowa Learning Farms workshop July 21 at Jasper County Fairgrounds in Colfax

July 6, 2015

Iowa Learning Farms, along with the Jasper County Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), will host a workshop to inform farmers of available conservation planning, the installation of grassed waterways and erosion control blankets along with the use of cover crops. The workshop is set for Tuesday, July 21, from Noon-2 p.m. on the Jasper County Fairgrounds in Colfax.
 
The workshop will begin with a complimentary lunch at Noon; followed by a program at 12:30 p.m. Attendees will hear from Jasper County farmer Patrick Gannon. He has been farming for 40 years and farms with his wife Diane and son-in-law Troy Layton. Gannon has been no-tilling half of his 2,000 acres for over 10 years. He started using cover crops last fall, planting triticale on 140 acres. Gannon installed several grassed waterways with erosion control blankets last fall and used cover crops as well. In addition to growing crops, Gannon has a farrow-to-finish hog operation.
 
Also speaking at the workshop are Jasper County NRCS Soil Conservationist Holly Giombi and District Conservationist Curtis Donohue. They will discuss using the NRCS Conservation Planning Process to solve resource concerns while minimizing risk and maximizing benefits. Gannon will share his perspective on working with NRCS, using the Conservation Planning Process, installing grassed waterways and planting cover crops. The speakers will also review the benefits of these for soil health and clean water. Following the program, attendees will take a field tour of Gannon’s grassed waterways, weather permitting.
 
The workshop is free and open to the public, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. Contact Jasper County NRCS by July 16, 641-792-4116 ext. 3 or by email: Jessica.Rutter@ia.nacdnet.net. The workshop will be held in the Big Tent on the Jasper County Fairgrounds, 359 N. Walnut St. in Colfax.
 
For more information about Iowa Learning Farms, visit the website: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/ilf/.
 
Established in 2004, Iowa Learning Farms is building a Culture of Conservation, 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 are the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, Iowa Natural Resources Conservation Service and Iowa Department of Natural Resources (USEPA section 319), Conserva­tion Districts of Iowa, Iowa Farm Bureau, Iowa Water Center and Practical Farmers of Iowa.
--30--