Research Category: Innovation Grants

Corn trial teaching tool and agricultural outreach at SMSU

(2019)
Southwest Minnesota State University/Tim Moline

SMSU has 15 acres of land made available by a local alumni and farmer. 2019 will be the fifth season this plot has been established and available for SMSU students for hands on learning. As well as learning, contractedresearch has been performed for Agricultural Companies on these acres. We would like to expand this research in the Agricultural community around the region by presenting the results of the work. This for example would be conducting a hybrid trial evaluating com traits.

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Reducing nitrate in surficial sand aquifer, Mower County

(2019)
Steve Lawler, Tim cotter, Jim Kellogg, Alan Slowinski

Commodity crop production in Minnesota is under scrutiny to reduce impacts of nitrogen fertilizer on groundwater. There is an extensive body of research documenting fertilizer as a source of nitrate in groundwater (http://www.mda.state.mn.us/fertilizer-source-nitrate-groundwater) . The revised Minnesota Nitrogen Fertilizer Management Plan, finalized by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture in March of 2015, recommends specific best management practices in South Central Minnesota to reduce nitrate leaching from nitrogen fertilizer. The incorporation of cover crops in commodity crop production has also potential to reduce nitrate leaching in soil water (Staver et.al.,

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Evaluating strip tillage to increase soil quality and improve profitability

(2019)
Harmon Wilts

This research project will evaluate strip tillage and its ability to improve soil health, while also maintaining crop production yields and farm profitability. We will utilize three fields of roughly 75 acres each. In each field, there will be 25 acres dedicated to the ETS Soil Warrior strip tillage machine, 25 acres designated for the Krause Gladiator strip tillage machine, and 25 acres designated for the Krause Dominator conventional ripper.

The data for the analysis of this research project will come from Climate Field View software,

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Testing techniques after corn crop removal for fertilizer application

(2019)
Jacob Sharkey

This project will investigate the different techniques which test for nitrates following the removal of a corn crop. Each of the techniques will sample at depths of 0-6”, 6-24”, and 24-48”. After analyzing the results, we will then be able to determine which technique is best to use for fertilization of corn, sugar beets, or another specialty crop that requires nitrate management following the harvest of a corn crop.
The purpose is to investigate the results of each technique and how the results differ on a set number of acres.

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Residual plant nutrient study

(2019)
Larry Liepold

I practice strip-till in corn and soybeans. Also practice no-till in soybeans where fertility is not a limiting factor. It is my objective to eliminate the fall strip-till operation for the following years soybean crop by applying the phosphorous & potassium at side dress of the com crop. My objective is to intensively sample soil, tissue and water to determine what the corn crop “stole” from the soybean crop.

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Teralytic soil probes and real time wireless nutrient tracking

(2019)
Brian Velde

Teralytic Soil probes will be available in limited supplies for the 2019 growing season. Teralytic soil probes use 26 proprietary sensors measuring nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, soil moisture, salinity, soil temp and PH every 15 minutes at depths of 6″, 18″, and 36″ in the soil. The probe will wirelessly transfer the readings remotely to an on-line platfonn. If we can accurately track these nutrient availability’s and see how they change throughout the growing season, this will revolutionize agriculture.

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Real Time Liquid Manure Testing and Nutrient Management

(2018)
A.J. Krusemark

This proposal is intended to test the nutrient analysis of hog manure in order to adjust application rate on a load-by-load basis with a goal of applying the manure using a variable rate prescription.
Building on the information learned through nitrogen management trials in 2017, this project will focus on improving the precision of application rates of injected liquid hog manure to minimize risk of nitrogen losses. Application rates will be targeted to achieve required phosphorus levels,

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Eliminating Soil Erosion Using a Three Crop Rotation and Extensive Cover Crops

(2018)
Brock Olson

The objective of this project is to develop a crop rotation that significantly reduces nitrate loss and soil erosion compared to the traditional corn-soybean rotation while maintaining profitability in Southeastern Minnesota. A proven method to decrease soil erosion and nitrate loss is through the use of cover crops. Cover crop use in northern mid-west states is more difficult due to the shorter season; the cover crop that has proven itself fairly reliable in this cold climate is winter rye.

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In-season Potassium and Nitrogen Applications Based on Crop Demand Curve, Soil and Tissue Sampling

(2018)
Kevin Poppel

As an essential nutrient potassium (K) plays a critical role in corn plant development and chemical processes. As a result of the number of roles it plays in the plant, potassium uptake and utilization often interacts with the availability and uptake of other nutrients. Potassium specifically affects the uptake of nitrate nitrogen into the plant. According to research done by the International Plant Nutrition Institute, higher yields and nitrogen utilization is improved with adequate potassium levels.

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Economic and Agronomic Study of Various VRN Programs

(2018)
Les Anderson

The purpose of this project is to evaluate some of the Variable Rate Nitrogen programs against a check to see if they can reduce the amount of N per bushel of corn produced and to see if there is enough economic return to pay for the program. The field is about 68 acres in size, naturally well drained with no tile, and is very uniform consisting of mainly one soil type, with soybeans as the previous crop.

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