June Webinar Covers Saturated Buffers for Nitrate Removal

This month’s Iowa Learning Farms webinar will be Wednesday, June 18 at 11:30 a.m. The webinar is part of a free series, hosted by ILF, through Adobe Connect. The webinars are held on the third Wednesday of each month. They are free and all that is needed to participate is a computer with Internet access.
This month’s presenter is Dan Jaynes, a research soil scientist at the USDA-Agricultural Research Service, National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment, in Ames, and a collaborating professor in Agronomy at Iowa State University. He will be discussing his work with saturated buffers for nitrate removal.
Riparian buffers are areas of natural plants and trees located between waterways and farmland. They are a proven technology for reducing sediment, phosphorus and nitrate contamination of surface waters, and help to reduce nitrate from shallow groundwater that flows through the buffer. Unfortunately, in tile-drained areas of the Midwest, buffers are not particularly effective in removing nitrate from the groundwater, because the tile lines discharge directly into surface waters, bypassing the buffers. Saturated buffers are an attempt to “re-plumb” the riparian buffer, redirecting some of the field tile drainage into the buffer as shallow groundwater flow.  As the water flows through the buffer, both denitrification and uptake by the perennial plants in the buffer remove nitrate and keep it out of the adjacent stream.
Jaynes has studied the fate and transport of agrichemicals in the landscape for the past 30 years and authored 110 peer-reviewed scientific publications. Current areas of research include characterizing the impact of farming practices on nitrate losses to surface waters, investigating the spatial and temporal patterns of yield variations in corn and soybean fields, and developing new designs and management practices for tile drainage to reduce nitrate losses to surface waters.

To connect to the webinar, go to https://connect.extension.iastate.edu/ilf/ at 11:30 a.m. on the morning of the webinar and log on using the “guest” option.

ILF has hosted a monthly webinar since January 2011. The ILF website has links for archived webinars from all previous sessions at http://www.extension.iastate.edu/ilf/Webinars/.  There are 40 webinars available to view on a variety of topics including soil erosion, cover crops and farmer perspectives. These can be viewed at any time.

The webinar archives also are available in podcast through iTunes.

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