The deadline for entering the annual Indiana Prairie Farmer/Beck's Hybrids Crops Knowledge contest is January 15. You've still got time to enter, and it's easy. Either find your December issue of Indiana Prairie Farmer which contained 10 simple multiple choice questions, answer them and mail in the easy–to- clip entry blank, or go to 'More Indiana Prairie Farmer' here on the Website, click 'Magazines on-line', click on the December issue, and find the contest information on page 21. If you prefer, you can type the correct answers in an email and send to: email@example.com.
Entries must either be postmarked by Jan. 15, or received by email before midnight, Jan. 15. The questions are easy, and the prizes are well worth the small amount of time and few cents you might spend on a stamp sending in an entry.
Beck's Hybrids, Atlanta, Ind., provides the awards. They include six bags of Beck's Hybrid seed corn for first place, six bags of Beck's soybeans for second place, and six bags of Beck's wheat, or equivalent prize, for third place. If there are ties, winners will be drawn from the correct entries. Employees of Beck's Hybrids and their families are not eligible. Decisions of the judges are final. Results and pictures of winners will be announced in the March issue of Indiana Prairie Farmer.
You'll find the answer to the first question and another entry blank in the January issue of Indiana Prairie Farmer on page 21. The question was: A soil penetrometer is used to:
a) pull forage samples, b) pull groundwater samples, c) find soil compaction, d) mix chemicals. The answer is 'c', identify soil compaction.
Only those reading this item get another freebie. The second question is: If 25 knots of a 50-foot rope with a knot each 6 inches touch residue, cover is: a) 100%, b) 25%, c) 50%, or d) 75%. The answer is 'c,' 50% residue coverage.
The knotted rope method became popular when the farm bills of the late '80's and early '90s began emphasizing that farmers must follow special conservation practices on highly erodible land to qualify for government benefits. Those rules are still in force.
A 50 foot rope with a knot every six inches has 100 knots. If 50 knots touch a piece of residue and 50 touch bare soil, then the percentage of residue cover is 50%. This method is still useful to see how much residue you're leaving after various tillage operations, including the new vertical tillage concept.
Be sure to enter by Jan. 15!