July 24, 2018
Hosts Darin and Nancy Williams will share their farm experiences with attendees. The Williams' use soil health practices to produce crops and livestock in Coffey County Kansas. Darin and Nancy grow corn, soybeans, wheat and cover crops on nearly 2000 acres. They also raise British white cattle, turkeys and chickens. The livestock are pasture raised and fed primarily on cover crop and other forages. Darin and Nancy are also partners with Darin's father in Natural Ag Solutions, selling seed for cover crops, wildlife food plots, livestock forages specialt crops and non-GMO soybean varities.
Joining Darin for the day are David Brandt from Carroll, Ohio. Dave Brandt has been using no-till and cover crops for more than 30 years on his northeast Ohio farm. He He began no-till farming in 1971 and has been using cover crops since 1978. David has participated in yield plots for corn, soybeans and wheat into various covers. This information has been used by seed growers as well as county agents and universities to encourage other farmers to adapt no-till practices in their farming operations. He has also been planting various blends of cover crops to find out what benefits they provide to improve soil. Dave has a wealth of experience utlizing cover crops to reduce input costs, provide crop nutrients and improve his soils.
Jacob Miller from Culbertson, Nebraska will share his experiences adding cover cropping systems to his family’s grazing rotation. With close to 4,000 acres of native grass and 600 acres of farm ground, Miller and his family have been able to do some pretty spectacular things with their management. He says their decision to use strip grazing rather than paddocks has allowed them to be more efficient with their forage use because they don’t have the trampling loss associated with using larger paddocks. For the last couple of years, Miller has planted a mix of oats, peas, barley, triticale and chickling vetch in April to be grazed through the early summer. This mix is not only an excellent source for grazing, but it can help break up soil compaction in the top few inches of the soil profile. Jake also owns and operates Live Wire Fencing Company.