ISU Extension and Outreach Offers 2017 Iowa Drainage School

3-day program offers resources to plan and lay out subsurface drainage systems

July 12, 2017, 10:56 am | Kapil Arora, Brent Pringnitz

AMES, Iowa – Agricultural drainage is an important management tool for crop production in many areas of Iowa. The design, installation and maintenance of drainage systems is the focus of the Iowa Drainage School scheduled for Aug. 22-24 at the Borlaug Learning Center on the Northeast Research and Demonstration Farm near Nashua, Iowa.

Iowa Drainage School“Iowa Drainage School provides educational opportunities for all interested in drainage whether they be contractors, farmers, consulting engineers, county officials and others,” said Matt Helmers, agricultural engineer with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. “The school focuses on the fundamentals of drainage design including getting an accurate survey, drainage pipe size and spacing, controlled drainage and water table management, legal considerations and different installation techniques and equipment.”

The three-day school features classroom lecture and discussion combined with team problem solving and field exercises. Student teams will survey and design a drainage system for a sample area of the host farm, using concepts learned during classroom discussion. By attending this school, participants will be able to plan and lay out subsurface drainage systems and work out project costs. There also will be in-field equipment and installation demonstrations.

Registration for this three-day school is $350 per person if registered by midnight, Aug. 9. Late registration is $400 and must be received by midnight, Aug. 16. Class size is limited to 40 participants and pre-registration is required. Registration includes meals indicated on the agenda, refreshments, course notebook and drainage reference materials.

The workshop site, located at 3327 290th St., Nashua, Iowa, can be found by taking exit 220 off Highway 218 and proceeding 1.2 miles west on B-60/280th Street. Go one mile south on Windfall Avenue, then 0.2 miles east on 290th Street. The farm is on the north side of the road.

Additional program information and online registration are available at

Photo Caption: Dr. Matt Helmers, extension agricultural engineer (left), works with students during the drainage design exercise at the Iowa Drainage School.

About the Authors: