Is more, heavier rain the new norm?

Weather extremes like those seen last year in Ohio, including more rainfall, heavier downpours, and warmer temperatures, will likely become the norm rather than the exception, says CFAES climate specialist Aaron Wilson. He says farmers in the state may need to make adjustments to deal with the extra water. Read the story.

On March 26, Wilson speaks on the topic in Shelby.

18,000 ways Ohio farmers are helping water

Here’s another reason to celebrate Ohio Agriculture Week, March 10–16:

At last count, nearly 18,000 farmers and others have successfully completed Ohio’s Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training. Provided by CFAES’ OSU Extension outreach arm, the state-required training shares science-based ways to keep nutrients in a field, where they work to feed cropsand out of water, such as Lake Erie and the Gulf of Mexico. Phosphorus and nitrogen are two of those nutrients.

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Celebrate: Partners for water, food

Here’s a reason to celebrate Ohio Agriculture Week, March 10–16:

In the Maumee River watershed in northwest Ohio, farmers are partnering with scientists to study fields with elevated phosphorus levels. Are the fields contributing disproportionately to Lake Erie’s harmful algal bloom problem? Phosphorus runoff is a driver of the blooms.

The study hopes to find answers, and then it plans to evaluate farming practices that could help—practices that reduce the runoff of phosphorus from the fields and also maintain the fields’ yields. Water quality and food production both stand to come out ahead.

A CFAES scientist is leading the work, but bottom line, farmers and nutrient service providers are helping make it all possible. Read how. (Photo: Getty Images.)

Pierzynski to be panelist on water quality

CFAES’ Gary Pierzynski will be a panelist for a policy session on “The Future of Lake Erie and the Quality of Our Water” at the Impact Ohio Toledo Regional Conference on March 14. Pierzynski serves as associate dean for research and graduate education.

The event, according to its website, will feature “key government officials, business leaders, and community members (discussing) issues important to the region.” Conference-goers “will hear first-hand from government leaders, political analysts, pundits, and policy experts on issues that affect their community.”

Tom Henry, environmental and energy writer for the Toledo Blade, will moderate the Lake Erie panel.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine will give the event’s keynote address.

CFAES is one of the conference’s sponsors.

Find details and a link to register.

What’s new in research on water quality, farming

Chris Winslow, director of the Ohio State-based Ohio Sea Grant program and CFAES’ Stone Laboratory at Lake Erie, is among the speakers slated for a March 13 water quality meeting in Wapakoneta. The event will look at recent research—on harmful algal blooms, nutrient management, and more—and what it may mean for decisions made by farmers. The host is the Farmers Alliance LLC. Read more.

Spotlight on woods, water, wildlife

The annual Ohio Woodland, Water, and Wildlife Conference is for you if you work in natural resources, manage land, or both. The agenda features 15 expert-led sessions grouped in three tracks—woodlands, water, and wildlife—and is set for March 6 in Mansfield. Topics in the tracks range from managing tree galls to using drones, mitigating algal blooms to managing geese, conserving birds to helping bumble bees. Check out the full list of topics and speakers.

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Set course for an evening on water

The annual Evening with Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Laboratory benefit event is set for Wednesday, Feb. 27, in Columbus. The two affiliated programs—Ohio Sea Grant is based at Ohio State; Stone Lab, located at Put-in-Bay on Lake Erie, is part of CFAES—conduct research, teaching, and outreach aimed at helping Lake Erie and water quality.

The event will feature a silent auction and the sale of Stone Lab merchandise, with the proceeds going to support student scholarships; and presentations by some of the faculty, staff, and students from the programs (such as CFAES student researcher Harrison Fried).

Admission is free and open to the public, but you’re encouraged to RSVP.

Find out more. (Photo: Stone Lab’s R/V Bio-Lab at Lake Erie, by Daniel Combs, Ohio Sea Grant, via Flickr.)

Register for Tri-State Water Quality Discussion

Chris Winslow, director of the Ohio State-based Ohio Sea Grant program and CFAES’ Stone Laboratory, will present “Nutrient Management Effects on Lake Erie” at State of the Lake: A Tri-State Water Quality Discussion, set for 5–8 p.m. Feb. 26 in Hillsdale, Michigan. Registration is $20, which includes dinner and resources, and is due by Friday, Feb. 22.

Also speaking at the event will be Extension educators from the tri-state area—Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana—who the event flyer says “will cover topics related to agriculture and nutrient management, including cover crops, the new Tri-State Fertility Guide, and fine-tuning a nutrient management plan.” Continuing education credits are available. Find out more and register.

Organizers of the event are Michigan State University Extension, Purdue Extension, and CFAES’ Ohio State University Extension outreach arm.

Hillsdale is about 75 miles west-northwest of Toledo, Ohio.