Tag: Cover Crops

Finding the roadmap to healthy soil

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

On a sunny day early in the growing season, before the corn or soybean crop has had time to spread a canopy, the surface of the bare soil around the plants can reach temperatures upwards of 120 degrees.

“It basically cooks the biology right out of the soil,” said USDA Agriculture Research Service (ARS) plant physiologist and conservation ag advocate Jerry Hatfield. “But it doesn’t have to be that way.

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Leading ag researchers on display at MN Ag EXPO

MN Ag EXPO will again be the place to be for an up-close look at some of the most exciting research happening in the state that will shape future farm practices. It is also one of the only opportunities farmers will have to speak with the researchers leading these projects.

Leaders from the University of Minnesota will be on-hand at the Verizon Wireless Center on Jan. 24-25 to chat with farmers and ag professionals about their work.

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Corn farmers’ stories reach millions on National Geographic

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) partnered with National Geographic in the fall to share the stories of America’s corn farmers with a robust national audience. Four farmers, including Minnesota Corn Growers Association board member Bryan Biegler, were featured on NationalGeographic.com and its social channels through November.

Each farmer was provided a large platform to share how innovation and technology has allowed them to become more productive and environmentally responsible. Biegler,

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Minnesota corn farm-Summer 2016

2018 Innovation Grant Program proposal deadline is Dec. 15

Minnesota corn farmers once again have the opportunity to put their innovative conservation ideas into action through the Minnesota Corn Growers Association’s (MCGA) Innovation Grant Program. Proposals on how to reduce nitrate loss, improve soil health, and protect water quality are being accepted through Dec.15, 2017.

MCGA, working alongside the Minnesota Corn Research & Promotion Council (MCR&PC), is offering a total of $300,000 in Innovation Grants to any Minnesota corn farmer seeking to test or develop an innovative or best practice in the following areas:

  • Nitrate loss reduction
  • Improved nitrogen management practices for Minnesota soils
  • Maintaining or improving water quality
  • Innovative soil conservation practices
  • Comparing and contrasting the measurable values of large data set decision tools

In 2017,

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Buffer Alternative Practices

Buffer Law deadline for compliance is Nov. 1

The deadline for farmers to comply with the Minnesota Buffer Law is less than a month away.

By Nov. 1, the law requires farmers to install a 50-foot vegetative buffer on all public waters, or file for a waiver that extends the deadline. By Nov. 1, 2018, farmers must have a 16.5-foot buffer on all public ditches.

Prior to Nov. 1, farmers are encouraged to visit their local Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) office to discuss options for compliance and implementation under Minnesota’s buffer law.

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National Geographic shares the stories of nation’s corn farmers

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) partnered with National Geographic this fall to share the stories of America’s corn farmers with a robust national audience. Four farmers, including Minnesota’s Bryan Biegler, were visited by the magazine over the summer, and their stories will be told on NationalGeographic.com and its social channels through November.

The campaign features four articles, each of which profile one farmer detailing the impact of innovation and technology on corn farming.

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Innovation Grant Spotlight: Keith Hartmann

The 2017 Innovation Grant Program is well underway, with the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) investing more than $250,000 in 23 farmer-led projects focused on conservation. Throughout the summer we have been highlighting ongoing projects focused on how to better manage nitrogen and protect water quality.

Keith Hartmann is in his second year of participating in the Innovation Grant Program. The Gibbon farmer joined in year one to test interseeding cover crops in between corn rows while applying nitrogen in the same pass.

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Field day touts bottom-line benefits of soil health

(Photo: Soil Health Partnership Director Nick Goeser shows the benefits of cover crops up close)

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

Bryan Biegler has planted mixes of rye grass, turnips, brassicas and more as cover crops between the rows of his corn and soybeans. His hope is the right mix will mean he can stop applying pre-emergent herbicide.

In August, Biegler hosted about 60 farmers, agronomists and conservationists recently at a field day to discuss his work with soil-friendly cover crops and reduced tillage.

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Innovation Grant Spotlight: Brian Ryberg

The 2017 Innovation Grant Program is well underway, with the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) investing more than $250,000 in 23 farmer-led projects focused on conservation. Throughout the summer we have been highlighting ongoing projects focused on how to better manage nitrogen and protect water quality.

There was a time when Brian Ryberg tilled the land on his Buffalo Lake farm until the soil was solid black prior to another season of corn-on-corn planting.

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Japanese ag official sees Minnesota grower leaders in action

Representing the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Kimihiko Eura visited Minnesota last week with a full agenda, experiencing nearly every corner of Minnesota agriculture. USDA offices, co-ops, ethanol plants, and of course many farms were all included during his week-long stay.

Organized by the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA), Eura’s trip to Minnesota was planned with the objective to gauge crop conditions, supply and demand of Minnesota corn and its storage capabilities.

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