Mark July 1 on your calendar if you live anywhere in the southern half of Indiana. It's the date for the first Purdue University Farms Field days. This one will be held at the Southeast Purdue Ag Center near Butlerville. Other farm field days will be scheduled through August.
"We've got some great programs lined up so people can see what we're doing," says Jerry Fankhauser, director of the Purdue research farm system. "We're excited to kick off the summer series at SEPAC. There is a lot going on there."
Don Biehle is the one and only superintendent SEPAC has ever had. He will be working behind the scenes to make sure things go off smoothly.
The July 1 field day begins at 3 p.m. EDT. After featured topics and dinner, Fred Whitford, Director of Purdue Pesticide programs, will cap off the evening program. Whitford was named an honorary Master Farmer in 2013.
Topics include a soybean update, with emphasis on starter fertilizer and plant population research. It will be led by Shaun Casteel, Extension soybean specialist.
Bob Nielsen, corn specialist, will discuss results of corn yield responses to seeding rates and nitrogen fertilizer rates.
One of the hottest topics, soil health, will be explored by Eileen Kladivko, also a Purdue Extension specialist. She will explain what it is and how to improve it. If you're looking for clues as to what she will talk about, think no-till and cover crops.
Reservations for the dinner are appreciated. Call 812 352 3033 by June 25. There is no fee for dinner or the field day. Exhibitors who help sponsor the meal will be available for one-on-one discussions during and immediately after dinner.
Topics may be adjusted slightly based on leading plant conditions at the time, but the research being done at the center will still be an important part of the discussion at each talk.