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No-till Field Day Sept. 3 near Humboldt


A Sept. 3 University of Nebraska-Lincoln No-till Field Day on the Ben Steffen Farm near Humboldt will highlight soil quality and cover crops.

The field day begins with 9 a.m., registration and refreshments with the program starting at 9:30 a.m., said Gary Lesoing, UNL Extension educator in Nemaha County.

Paul Jasa, UNL Extension engineer and no-till specialist, will lead the discussion on the impact of no-till and soil quality. Participants then will be able to view a soil pit. This is a pit dug deep enough into the ground so that participants can walk in it and look at the soil and roots growing to a depth of 3.5 feet.

Fields that have been no-tilled for many years will show improvement in soil structure, soil tilth, infiltration rate, microbial activity and increases in organic matter in their soil, Lesoing said.

Participants also will be able to see a rainfall simulator which will be demonstrated by Dan Gillespie, Natural Resource Conservation Service no-till specialist. This is where water is sprinkled over soil with different types of cover on the surface. It demonstrates the benefits of no-till on controlling soil erosion.

Jasa and Gillespie then will discuss cover crop in no-till cropping systems.

The program will conclude at noon with lunch. The field day's primary focus will be southeast Nebraska, but anyone interested in learning more about no-till farming is welcome.

The Steffan farm is located one-fourth mile west of 637 Ave. and Highway 4 on the south side of the road. It has been in long-term continuous no-till for 25 to 30 years.

The field day is sponsored by UNL Extension, NRCS and UNL Extension in Richardson and Nemaha counties.

For more information, contact Lesoing at 402-274-4755. It is recommended that participants call in advance for lunch planning.

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