Cover crop, soil health and bioreactor field day to be held near Readlyn on March 29th

March 8, 2018

AMES, Iowa—Iowa Learning Farms, along with Bremer County ISU Extension and Outreach, will host a cover crop, soil health and bioreactor field day on Thursday, March 29 from 12:30-2:30 p.m. at Brian and Brenda Meyer’s farm, rural Readlyn. The event is free and open to the whole family and includes a complimentary meal.

Bremer County farmers Brian and Brenda have been raising corn and soybeans near Readlyn for the past 28 years.  Nearly 20 years ago, they began no-tilling their acres to help reduce soil erosion and improve soil health. Three years ago, they added cover crops to their operation using rye, radish and triticale with the goal of improving their conservation efforts on their land. Brian will discuss how he is making no-till work in his operation and offer tips for adding cover crops to your land. Brian will also provide a tour of his cover crops, weather permitting.

The workshop agenda will continue with Ron Lenth, Bremer County ISU Extension Coordinator, sharing monitoring results from a nearby bioreactor intercepting tile drainage water to reduce nitrate loss from the field. 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. Neil Sass, Natural Resources Conservation Service District Agronomist, will lead a discussion on practices that can help improve soil health.

The field day will be held at the Meyer Farm, 3061 230th St/Hwy 3, Readlyn. The farm is located four miles east of Readlyn on the north side of Hwy 3. The workshop 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

For more information about Iowa Learning Farms, visit

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, Iowa Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Iowa Department of Natural Resources (USEPA section 319).


Liz Juchems

Conservation Outreach Specialist



Ron Lenth

Bremer County ISU Extension Coordinator