ODA Announces Ohio Working Lands Small Grains Program and Other Updates of WLEB Programs

The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) is announcing an additional assistance program for producers in the Western Lake Erie Basin funded by the passage of Ohio Senate Bill 299.

The Ohio Working Lands Small Grains Program is a voluntary program that will encourage producers in the Western Lake Erie Basin to plant small grains such as wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye on eligible cropland. As the “working lands” name implies, participants must plant and harvest small grains, land apply manure, and plant a cover crop to receive a cost-share payment to help offset operating costs. The program benefits the planting of small grains not only for the conservation benefits, but to provide livestock producers with a longer application window to land apply manure and nutrients. Continue reading

Keep an Eye Out for Water Quality Risk This Spring

By: Greg Labarge, OSU Extension Field Specialist

Research measuring nutrient losses from surface and subsurface drainage in Ohio indicates that not all fields contribute equally to various water quality issues. Fields with higher than average potential losses have some characteristics observed during everyday field activities or when working with agronomic records.  For example, a stream bank collapsing and sloughing off is adding to downstream sedimentation issues, or a field with a soil test report showing phosphorus levels above agronomic need can result in higher soluble phosphorous losses. Continue reading

Keeping Phosphorus Out Of Waterways

Previously published by Ohio Ag Net

In a pit about 3 feet underground lies one possible solution to reducing a large amount of the phosphorus draining from some of Ohio’s agricultural fields.

At two locations in the state, researchers with The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) are testing phosphorus filters that have removed up to 75% of the phosphorus running through them. Phosphorus can be found in commercial fertilizers and animal manure. Continue reading

OSU Looks At Options to Apply Manure When It’s Rained A Lot

Previously published by Ohio Farmer online

Throughout the growing season, and particularly this fall, there were a lot of rainfalls — off and on. Not only did fields fill up with water, but manure ponds and lagoons did also, and that might make some farmers a bit nervous.

Ohio had the third-wettest year ever in 2018, and there’s been little letup since then, leaving farm fields across the state saturated. For farmers with a lot of livestock, spreading manure onto wet or frozen land as fertilizer is not an option right now, and manure ponds are filling up fast. Continue reading

“Watersheds In Distress” Revisions This Month

By: Peggy Kirk Hall, Associate Professor and Director, OSU Agricultural & Resource Law Program

The legislative Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR) has voted to send the “watersheds in distress” rule revisions back to the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA). JCARR reviews administrative rules to make sure they follow legal requirements. The “watersheds in distress” rules seek to address agricultural nutrient impacts on water quality. At its December meeting, JCARR members voted 8 to 1 to recommend that ODA revise and refile the rules for consideration at JCARR’s next meeting on Jan. 22, 2019. Continue reading

Lessons Learned in Ohio’s Updated Fertilizer Recommendations

From Ohio Ag Net

At the recent 4R Field Day in Hardin County, Ohio State soil fertility specialist Steve Culman presented on the updated fertilizer recommendations through 300+ on-farm strip trials since 2014.

He said some main take-home points he hoped to get across to agriculturalists were: Continue reading

Manure Impact on Soil Aggregation

By: Rick Koelsch, University of Nebraska, Previously published on Farm Journals Pork online

If manure increases formation of larger (macro) and more stable soil aggregates , several benefits may result for fields fertilized by manure compared to commercial fertilizer including:
1) Reduced runoff and soil erosion;
2) Increased water infiltration into the soil possibly leading to greater drought tolerance; and
3) Partial offsetting of higher soil P levels resulting from manure application and limiting P loss to local surface water.  Continue reading

Agricultural Nutrients Targeted in Clean Lake 2020 Bill and Kasich Executive Order

By: Peggy Hall, Asst. Professor, Agricultural & Resource Law, Ohio State University

Recent actions by the Ohio legislature and Governor Kasich will affect the management of agricultural nutrients in Ohio. The Ohio General Assembly has passed “Clean Lake 2020” legislation that will provide funding for reducing phosphorous in Lake Erie. Continue reading

Know When to Use Granular Vs. Liquid Fertilizers

By Sonja Begemann, Farm Journal Seeds and Crop Production Editor
Previously published on AgWeb Daily

You know as well as the next farmer fertilizer is critical to promote healthy, high-yielding crop growth. When it comes to nitrogen how you buy fertilizer can have a strong impact on how well your crop grows, and your wallet. Continue reading