Field Day Focus is Field Drainage Water Quality

AMES, Iowa — Iowa Learning Farms and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach are co-hosting a field day that focuses on water quality of tile-drained landscapes on Thursday, Sept. 1 at 5 p.m. near Gilmore City in Pocahontas County. The field day is free, open to the public and includes a complimentary evening meal.

The field day will be held at a research site, established more than 20 years ago, that originally looked at agricultural drainage wells and has been expanded to include water quality issues relating to tile drained lands. The research, conducted by several Iowa State University faculty members, examines nitrogen loss, drainage system design and how to meet crop production demands while maintaining water quality expectations.

Speakers at the field day include Iowa State agricultural and biosystems engineer Matt Helmers, who will provide information about drainage water quality; Iowa State agronomy professor John Sawyer and staff will speak about the effects of cereal grain cover crops on corn nitrogen management; Iowa State professor of wetland ecology Bill Crumpton will explore nitrate removal systems; Iowa State agricultural and biosystems engineer Mark Hanna will discuss planting in high residue systems; and Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) natural resources engineer Dean Lemke will review some of the state programs addressing water quality. Also, local NRCS personnel will be on hand to answer questions about local programs. Attendees can visit a combination of speakers who interest them as they will be held simultaneously and repeated.

The site is located two miles west of Gilmore City on Hwy 3, one mile north on 320th Avenue and then one-half mile west on 510th St.