Would prairie strips — a unique conservation practice to help improve water quality — work on your farm? You will have an opportunity to tune in and find out at 1 p.m. July 9.
Iowa Learning Farms, in partnership with the Iowa Nutrient Research Center and the Conservation Learning Group, is hosting a free virtual prairie strips field day.
“Join us as we explore the multitude of benefits prairie strips can offer with Tim Youngquist, ISU Prairie STRIPS farmer liaison, and Gary Guthrie, Story County landowner with prairie strips,” says Liz Ripley, conservation and cover crop outreach specialist with ILF. “We are excited to offer this opportunity that will include video footage from the field, as well as the opportunity to ask questions live.”
Prairie strips are a farmland conservation practice that uses strategically placed native prairie plantings in crop fields. The practice has been tested by the Science-based Trials of Row crops Integrated with Prairie Strips (STRIPS) team since 2007 on experimental plots at the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge and increasingly on commercial farms across Iowa.
More farmers use practice
Results from more than eight years of trials show that converting just 10% of a crop field to prairie strips could result in a reduction of 95% of the sediment, 90% of the phosphorus and 84% of the nitrogen from overland flow of surface water.
“Prairie strips are a useful conservation tool that farmers and landowners throughout the Midwest are integrating into their farming operations,” Youngquist says. “Prairie keeps soil in place, filters water, offers habitat for many native species of wildlife and pollinators, provides beautiful blooming flowers and more.”
Make plans to participate in the live field day. Shortly before 1 p.m. July 9, go to ISU’s Zoom page or visit iowalearningfarms.org/page/events and click “Join Live Virtual Field Day.” Or call 312-626-6799 or 646-876-9923. Meeting ID is 914 1198 4892.
Field day archived
The field day will be recorded and archived on the ILF website so it can be watched at any time.
A certified crop adviser continuing education unit has been applied for, for people able to participate in the live webinar. Information on how to apply to receive credit (if approved) will be provided at the end of the live field day.