Extension News

Agricultural Drainage School Plays Critical Role in Efficient Crop Production

8/14/2008

AMES, Iowa -- Agricultural drainage is becoming increasingly important due to the critical role it plays for Iowa's emerging bio-economy. Drainage systems that are properly designed and operating are essential to achieving excellent agricultural production capability.

The Iowa Drainage School is being offered to address these issues on Sept. 9-11, at the Field Extension Education Laboratory near Ames. It is sponsored by Iowa State University (ISU) Extension, University of Minnesota Extension, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the Iowa Drainage District Association (IDDA).

"People looking to install a new drainage system or retrofit an existing system will want to attend this school," said Matt Helmers, ISU Extension agricultural engineer.

"The workshop will focus on drainage design, economics of drainage, water management and legal issues related to drainage."

The intent of the Iowa Drainage School is to provide training about

  • agricultural drainage concepts,
  • planning and laying out drainage systems including surveying  a profile, 
  • calculating tile line sizes and spacing using actual field data,
  • making connections and setting up drainage control structures,
  • NRCS and IDDA regulatory considerations, and
  • fixing common drainage system issues.

Drainage contractors, landowners, professional engineers and consultants, NRCS professionals, county administrators, IDDA officials and others who are involved in making drainage design decisions within their respective businesses and organizations are invited to attend.

This is a three-day school with each day including a combination of hands-on training, lecture and discussion, and problem solving using examples. By attending this school, participants will be able to plan and layout subsurface drainage systems and work out project costs.

Registration fees for this three-day school are $275 per person if registered by Aug. 29. Registrations received after Aug. 29 are $325 per person. Class size is limited to 40 participants. Registration fees include meals indicated on the agenda, refreshments and handouts.

A copy of the school program is available at http://www.aep.iastate.edu/ids/ or through your local ISU Extension county office.

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Contacts :

Kapil Arora, Agricultural Engineering field specialist, (515) 382-6551, pbtiger@iastate.edu

Greg Brenneman, Agricultural Engineering field specialist, (319) 337-2145, gregb@iastate.edu

Matt Helmers, Agricultural and BioSystems Engineering, (515) 294-6717, mhelmers@iastate.edu

Brent Pringnitz, Agribusiness Education Program, (515) 432-9548, bpring@iastate.edu

Del Marks, Extension Communications and External Relations, (515) 294-9807, delmarks@iastate.edu