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2021 May Stewardship Advocate

Posted on May 25, 2021 at 10:51 AM by Iowa Corn


What a Spring!  Despite a pandemic and large areas of drought, planting has been near record pace.  Let’s hope the rest of the growing season cooperates. 

The Iowa state legislature has wrapped up its 2021 session with good news for water quality.  Legislators passed a 10-year extension of Senate File 512 which will provide long-term, dependable funding through 2039.  These funds will be used for rural and urban projects to improve soil health and water quality to advance the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy.  Click here for Secretary Naig’s legislative highlights. 

Speaking of water quality funding, here are a few opportunities for financial assistance for conservation practices: 

  • Farmers can sign up for state cost share funds for cover crops, no-till, strip-till, or nitrification inhibitors for this fall.  First time cover crop users are eligible for $25/acre while experienced cover crop users can receive $15/acre.  Reduced tillage acres are eligible for $10/acre and using a nitrapyrin nitrification inhibitor with fall fertilizer is eligible for $3/acre.  Click here for more information. 

  • The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) wants to enroll four million acres and has increased rental payments and incentives.  Click here for more information. 

  • The Soil Health and Income Protection Program is accepting applications in the prairie pothole region until July 16.  This is a voluntary program with 3- to 5- year contracts.  It’s a lighter version of CRP.  Click here for more information. 

With planting wrapping up, field days and other events are ramping up.  Be sure to check out the events listed below and tune in to the Big Show on Wednesdays for Clean Water in Iowa Starts Here.  

Finally, the Soil Health Partnership is ending May 28, 2021.  After seven years, the project has raised awareness about soil health and demonstrated the economic and environmental benefits of soil health practices.  It has built a great foundation for others to continue this work.  Thanks to all the farmers and staff who participated with SHP!  Click here for its farewell blog. 

Latest Information 

USDA Releases 90-Day Progress Report on Climate-Smart Ag 

Naig:  New Federal Funding Helps Build Upon Water Quality Projects Underway 

New Research Predicts Benefits to Monarchs from Habitat Planted Near Crop Fields 

Agricultural Ecosystem Asset Credit Opportunities Changing Rapidly 

No-Till Limits Moisture Issues on West Central Iowa Farm 

Farmers See the Plus Side of Adding 4R Plus Practices 

Wetlands in the Agricultural Landscape:  Nitrate Reduction and More 

Maybe Carbon Contracts Will Finally Convince Us to Update Real Estate Laws 

Biden’s Plan Would Boost Conservation of US Lands, Waters 

Risks and Rewards with Conservation Tillage, Cover Crops 

Upcoming Events 

June 2 Carbon Markets, Webinar 

June 7 Continuum Ag Field Day, Washington 

June 10 Edge Feathering for Quail, Virtual 

June 10 Thistle Control in Grasslands, Virtual 

June 14 Corn Stover Harvesting, Eldora 

June 15 Corn Stover Harvesting, Webster City 

June 15 Herbicide Resistance Management, McCallsburg 

June 15 Carbon Markets, Virtual 

June 16 Healthy Soil Conference, Emmetsburg 

June 17 Soil Health Field Day, Newton 

June 18 Corn Stover Harvesting, Ogden 

June 18 Wetlands, Virtual 

June 21 Corn Stover Harvesting, Marshalltown 

June 22 Ecosystem Markets, Webinar 

June 23 Research Field Day, Kanawha 

June 24 Research Field Day, Nashua 

June 24 Corn Stover Harvesting, Nevada 

June 24 Ecosystem Markets, Webinar 

June 24 Pollinator Habitat, Virtual 

Farmer to Farmer

Soil Health & Cover Crops 

Check out the highlights of last month’s cover crop field day in Des Moines county.  Special thanks to Ryan and Phil Heiniger for hosting! 

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