FARMERS: Here’s a quick reminder of the opportunity for you to dispose of unwanted pesticides: The Ohio Department of Agriculture is taking unwanted pesticides at the Hardin County Fairgrounds (Kenton) on Monday, Aug. 22, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and at the Miami County Fairgrounds (Troy) on Wednesday, Aug. 24, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Only farm chemicals will be accepted. Paint, antifreeze, solvents, and household or non-farm pesticides will not be accepted. To pre-register, or for more information, contact the Ohio Department of Agriculture at 614-728-6987.
We will be holding a Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training on the evening of Monday, Aug. 29, at the Palazzo in Botkins. Light refreshments will be available at 6 p.m. with the program to begin at 6:30p. This three-hour program will allow certification to apply commercial fertilizer to 50 acres or more for those who do not presently hold a pesticide applicator license.
We need registrations by Aug. 24. Please contact me at the Extension office, 937-498-7239, to let me know you plan to attend. There is no cost; Trupointe is sponsoring this program.
Soil that has been farmed for 100 years has lost a lot of organic matter. For the typical farmland in northwest Ohio, the organic matter is probably less than half of what it was before farming started on that land. By using continuous no-till, cover crops, proper rotation, and a few other techniques that provide a continuous living cover, we’re mimicking nature. We’re not just conserving soil, but building soil.
The Ohio No-Till Summer Field Day will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 31, on the Jan Layman Farm, 15238 Township Road 119, Kenton. Several sessions at the field day will address the use of cover crops in no-till systems. Participants will be able to compare different types of cover crops planted earlier this summer. You will also be able to see how cover crops affect the soil underground by viewing a soil pit during one of the demonstrations.
An important part of good soil are the soil microbes, particularly beneficial fungi. During years of drought, it’s very beneficial to have these microbes in the soil. These fungi need five to eight months with some type of crop growing on the land to reproduce; corn and soybean are normally on the land only four to five months. Planting cover crops can bridge that gap and allow the fungi to complete their life cycle and reproduce more efficiently. Tillage destroys the networks and it can take up to seven years for soil to recover when a farmer changes from a conventional to a no-till system. Cover crops and no-till together speed up the process.
Other presentation topics include “Water Management and Water Quality Update,” and “The Economics of Resilience.” Equipment demonstrations include Aqua-Till, which uses ultra-high-pressure water jets to cut into the soil for planting, and a John Deere 2510H dry fertilizer injector.
Early registration (includes lunch) for the event is $40 by August 22nd; on-site registration is $60. A complete agenda and registration information are available at ohionotillcouncil.com/2016/06/29/hardin-county-event/. You can contact Bret Margraf at [email protected] or 419-447-7073 with questions.
Just as reminder that the Southwest Ohio Corn Growers Field Day will be Tuesday, Aug. 16, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Fayette County Farm, 2770 state Route 38 NE in Washington Court House. The focus of the day is on sprayer technologies to improve accuracy and efficiency while saving you money. In addition to new sprayer technologies, this Field Day will also address nutrient applications and placement. The field day is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Ken Ford at 740-335-1150.
The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at [email protected]