A soil and water conservation district supervisor from Decatur County, no-till farmer, tiling contractor, father and grandfather was announced as a regional winner in the annual Conservation Legacy Contest. The contest is sponsored by the American Soybean Association, with help from BASF, Monsanto, the Soy Checkoff program, and Corn & Soybean Digest.
Roger Wenning, Greensburg, was named the Northeast Region winner. He will compete against two other conservation-minded farmers for the national award. The winner will be announced during the Commodity Classic in Florida on March 1.
Wenning is no stranger to Indiana Prairie Farmer readers. He was named Supervisor of the Year in 2012, an award sponsored by Indiana Prairie Farmer. He appeared on the May cover of the magazine in 2012.
He's also been featured in stories about cover crops. Wenning, who practices primarily strip till, has been an innovator in brining cover crops into his area. He has hosted several cover crop field days and root digs on his farm, and has also grown out several cover crop plots on his farm. He uses cover crops in his strip-till operation.
In 2012 he also began trials with twin-row corn, using his Great Plains no-till planter set to plant in twin rows. Spared by the weather, the plot yielded information about how various hybrids perform in twin rows at different populations. He intends to intensify his efforts on the plot this year as he seeks more answers. He seeded a cover crop into the plot last fall before harvesting the corn.
His son, Nick, has also turned shrimp farming into an adventure. While it's not much of a money-maker yet, he grows shrimp in a man-made pond at the homestead each year, and then drains the pond and catches the shrimp during a special Saturday in September. The event is getting attention statewide from those who love shrimp.
Congratulations to Roger Wenning for putting Indiana in the forefront of conservation again.