The newest and most innovative ways to reduce nutrient runoff were on display recently during the Hardin County Field Day. The event was held in Dunkirk at Kurt Farms, one of three farms participating in the Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network. The five-year, $1 million demonstration farm project in the Western Lake Erie Basin is a partnership between Ohio Farm Bureau and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service. The other participating farms are Kellogg Farms in Forest and Stateler Family Farms in McComb.
More than 180 people attended the event and learned about soil health, two-stage ditches, blind inlets, Ohio State University Extension’s edge-of-field research, nutrient management, equipment options for fertilizer incorporation and record keeping. Chris Winslow of Ohio State University’s Stone Laboratory at Lake Erie was the featured speaker during lunch and discussed the current health of Lake Erie. Attendees also got to see field demonstrations of equipment.
Partners on the Hardin County Field Day were Hardin Soil and Water Conservation District, Ohio Farm Bureau, The Nature Conservancy in Ohio, Putnam Soil and Water Conservation District, Ohio State University Extension, John Deere, Findlay Implement, local landowners, Ohio Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Natural Resources and the Demo Farms Network.
Clean water is an important natural resource, and the demonstration farms project is one way Ohio farmers are stepping up to help protect it. Two years ago Ohio Farm Bureau launched a Water Quality Action Plan, which details a series of proactive steps to improve and protect water quality while maintaining productive farming. The project has now committed $2 million of member funds to help farmers improve their knowledge and develop techniques that make sense agronomically and environmentally.
Attendees en route to the demonstration fields.