Redefining the Field Edge to Improve Profitability, Wildlife Habitat and Water Quality

Field day set for June 1 near Manson

May 13, 2022, 11:23 am | Liz Ripley

AMES, Iowa — Iowa Learning Farms and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will host a field day Wednesday, June 1, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Brent Johnson’s Farm near Manson. The free event is open to farmers and landowners and includes a complimentary meal.

A project led by Mark Licht, extension cropping systems specialist and assistant professor with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, and funded by the North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, is working with Iowa farmers to convert marginal land areas prone to flooding to perennial vegetation to evaluate the profitability and explore the potential benefits to water quality, soil health, wildlife habitat and overall aesthetics.

Following a complimentary meal, the field day will begin with a demonstration of the Conservation Station rainfall simulator. Licht and Brent Johnson, farmer partner and host, will discuss the process of redefining the field edge from site selection to seeding and management, as well as highlight the research findings to date across the demonstration sites. Weather permitting, there will be a short tour of the perennial vegetation site following the program.

The field day will be held at the Johnson Farm, 1811 Ralston Ave., Manson. From Manson, head west on IA-7 for 2 miles. Turn right to head north on Ralston Ave for 0.9 miles. The farm is located on the west side of the road and field day signs will mark the driveway to enter.

The event is free and open to farmers and landowners, though reservation is required to ensure adequate space and food. For reasonable accommodations and to RSVP, contact Liz Ripley at 515-294-5429 or  Attendees will be entered in a drawing for Iowa State University Prairie Strips honey.

Iowa Learning Farms field days and workshops are supported by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. For more information about Iowa Learning Farms, visit

Shareable photo: Perennial vegetation.

About the Authors: 

Liz Ripley

Iowa Learning Farms and Water Rocks!