When people in Indiana are asked what they have learned from yield maps, the No. 1 answer, by far, is that tile drainage pays. There’s even extra incentive to install tile drainage in the future in Indiana. According to Justin Schneider, Indiana Farm Bureau, the Legislature passed language exempting farm tile purchases from sales tax.
Whether you install your own tile or have someone else do it, you can learn about what it takes to install a good drainage system during a special field day slated for June 7-8. It will be held at the Davis Purdue Agricultural Center near Farmland. Purdue University Extension, Purdue ag centers and the Indiana chapter of the Land Improvement Contractors of America group, known more commonly as LICA, are co-sponsoring the event.
See actual tiling
Registration begins both mornings at 8 a.m. EDT in the Davis Purdue Ag Center shop at 6230 North State Road 1, north of Farmland. The actual program begins at 8:30 a.m.
During morning sessions, you can visit the field to see equipment demonstrations and hear talks on specific aspects related to installing a good tiling system. Jeff Boyer, superintendent of Davis Purdue Ag Center, says these demonstrations include proper bedding of field tile, how to make tile connections and techniques available for leveling soil over the installed tile line.
The event is free both days, except for lunch, which will be available for a nominal fee. Time will be allotted to visit vendor displays in the shop during the lunch hour. Expect several local vendors who sell products related to drainage and tiling to be present.
Tile plow demonstrations will be going on both days. The afternoon will be a great time to check out various tiling machines in action, Boyer says. The plan is to install an actual drainage system in a field at the farm. The farm consists primarily of tight clay soils, which are naturally poorly drained.
Jane Frankenberger, a Purdue University Extension field drainage specialist, will be on hand on June 7 only to discuss results from a field tile system and experiment installed over a decade ago at the center. She will speak after lunch, and there will be time to visit the site where this tile was installed. Afterward, there will still be plenty of opportunity to watch live tiling demonstrations where the new system is being installed.
Registration is requested, although you can show up on either day and be part of the event. You can register here.
The biggest unknown for the field day is weather. Since the soils are naturally somewhat poorly drained or poorly drained, Boyer says weather could be a factor. He wants soils to be in good condition for tiling.
If you’re not sure if the event will still be held, Boyer urges you to check first, either by emailing him directly or calling the Davis Purdue Ag Center office. Email [email protected], or call 765-468-7022. The event will likely be postponed for a few days up to a week if weather conditions are not suitable on June 7-8.