ISU Extension and Outreach Offers 2018 Iowa Drainage School

Three-day program offers resources to understand and design subsurface drainage systems

May 7, 2018, 8:07 am | Kapil Arora, Brent Pringnitz

Kapil Arora and drainage school participants.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 to be held on Aug. 21-23 at the Borlaug Learning Center on the Northeast Research and Demonstration Farm near Nashua, Iowa.

“Iowa Drainage School provides educational opportunities for all interested in drainage whether they are contractors, farmers, consulting engineers, county officials or others,” said Matt Helmers, professor and agricultural engineering specialist 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 lectures and discussions 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 discussions. By attending this school, participants will be able to plan and lay out subsurface drainage systems and work out project costs. In-field equipment and drainage tile installation demonstrations will also take place in the school.

Registration for this three-day school is $350 per person if registered by midnight, Aug.10. Late registration is $400 and must be received by midnight, Aug. 17. 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. Additional program information and online registration are available at

For assistance with registration or questions contact ANR Program Services at 515-294-6429 or


PHOTO: Kapil Arora, extension agricultural engineer (center) works with students during the drainage design exercise at the Iowa Drainage School.


About the Authors: