Women landowners cover crop field day to be held near Diagonal on March 28th

March 7, 2018

AMES, Iowa—Iowa Learning Farms, along with Union County Soil and Water Conservation District and USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service, will host a cover crop, soil health and conservation leases field day for women landowners on Wednesday, March 28 from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at James and Michelle Allen’s farm, rural Diagonal. The event is free and includes a complimentary meal.

The field day will be hosted at James and Michelle Allen’s farm where they produce corn and soybeans as well as raise cows with James’ parents. With the goals of reducing erosion and less time needed for planting, James is using a no-tillage system for both his corn and soybean acres. This past fall, they seeded 55 acres of cereal rye as a cover crop to help store nutrients after manure application.  The workshop agenda will also include Union County landowner and farmer Deb Thummel. Deb and her family took over the family farm near Shannon City several years ago where they raise cattle and corn, soybeans and hay. In recent years, Deb as added cover crops to the farm using cereal rye and radishes. Together James and Deb will share their experiences with cover crops and provide some tips for successfully adding them to your land.

Additional speakers include Charles Brown, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach farm management specialist, discussing how to work with tenants to incorporate cover crops and other conservation practices. Liz Juchems, Iowa Learning Farms conservation outreach specialist, sharing the benefits and challenges of cover crops, how cover crops impact soil health, and an introduction into seeding and termination.

The field day will be held at the Allen Farm, 1459 270th Street, Diagonal, Iowa. From Creston, go south on County Road P27/Hi and Dry Road for 9 miles. Turn right to head west on 270th Street for 0.4 miles. The farm is located on the north side of the road.

The workshop is free and open to the whole family, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. If you need accommodations, please notify Union County SWCD by March 23rd. Please RSVP to Union County SWCD at 641-782-4218 ext. 3 or dixie.baker@ia.nacdnet.net.  

For more information about Iowa Learning Farms, visit www.iowalearningfarms.org.

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




Jodi Hitz

Union Soil & Water Conservation District


(641) 782-4218 ext. 3