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ILF sets Nov. 19 cover crop workshop

By Staff | Nov 10, 2014

KANAWHA – Iowa Learning Farms and Practical Farmers of Iowa, as part of the Iowa Cover Crops Working Group, will host a cover crop workshop from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Nov. 19 in the Kanawha Fire Department Building, 104 S. Main, in Kanawha.

Topics will range from using cover crop mixtures, selecting the right cover crop for a specific farm, using cover crops to enhance soil and water quality and cover crop effects on soil health.

The workshop is free and includes a complimentary lunch. Peregistration is requested before Nov. 19 by calling Iowa Learning Farms, (515) 294-8912.

Cover crops are growing in popularity in Iowa. When cover crops are added to a corn-soybean rotation, they can help reduce nitrogen and phosphorus loads entering water bodies, increase soil organic matter, and reduce soil erosion.

As part of the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy, when cover crops are used in combination with other conservation management practices, point and nonpoint source pollution is reduced in Iowa waters and downstream.

Other conservation management practices include strip-till or no-till, grassed waterways, extended crop rotations, installing buffers, wetlands and bioreactors.

The Iowa Cover Crop Working Group’s goal is to increase the amount of living cover on Iowa agricultural lands.

The group provides a unified voice from academy, non-profit and industry sectors on the importance of cover crops and the encouragement of their use in cropping systems across the state.

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