You don’t get a chance to hear Jane Hardisty and Dave Brandt at one place on the same day very often. Hardisty is the state conservationist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Indiana. Brandt, Carroll, Ohio, has nearly 50 years of no-till experience and is one of the most well-known farmer-experts on cover crops in the country.
Both will be featured at Elkhart County’s "Make Your Soil Great Again" workshop on March 1. The program is sponsored by the Elkhart County Soil and Water Conservation District, USDA-NRCS and Purdue University Extension in Elkhart County.
Hardisty will discuss past and present conservation efforts, and Brandt will focus on cover crop management.
James Hess, program manager for the Elkhart County SWCD, says the workshop includes much more than just these two speakers.
There will be three panels, focusing on cover crop establishment, cover crop termination and available programs to help farmers get started with cover crops. Some of the panelists include: Tom Moneyheffer, Byron Seeds; Rod King, Brodbeck Seed; Lonnie Martin, Ron Martin Seed and Supply; Brian Rodenbeck, AgriFlite Services; and Rick Schlipf, Schlipf Precision Ag.
Other panelists expected to participate include: Gayle Wint, Partnership for Ag Resources; Brian Early, DuPont Pioneer; and Gabe Ayers, Clunette Elevator. Farmers Dean Rink, Galen Ramer and Carl Stoltzfus are tentatively slated to participate in one or more panel discussions.
It’s a star-studded lineup of local people with experience in raising cover crops and improving soil health, Hess says. The event is free and includes lunch. Continuing education credits for various programs, including the Private Applicator Recertification Program, Certified Crop Adviser and continuing certification hours (CCH), will be available.
The workshop will be held at the Elkhart County Community Center on the Elkhart County Fairgrounds in Goshen. Reservations by Feb. 24 are requested. Learn more by calling Hess at 574-533-4383, ext. 3, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.