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January 11, 2002

Tri-State Conservation Tillage Expo to feature no-till benefits

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Conservation tillage options for corn production will be the focus of the Tri-State Conservation Tillage Expo to take place on Feb. 6 at the eBay Kruse Auction Park, located southeast of Auburn, Ind., along Interstate 69.

Private consultants and university specialists will offer their experience and research findings on the benefits of increased root development and crop residue management to improve yields and net returns. Each specialist and/or consultant will team up with a local farmer who will provide personal testimony on the benefits of conservation tillage.

The expo is sponsored by a number of retail agricultural suppliers in conjunction with the St. Joseph River Watershed Initiative and its member agencies and organizations.

"Conservation tillage, especially no-till, is considered one of the most effective practices used to reduce soil erosion and nutrient and pesticide runoff," said Jim Lake, Purdue University Extension soil conservation specialist. "Increasing the use of conservation tillage in the St. Joe River watershed is critical to enhancing the source water quality of Fort Wayne's drinking water supply.

"If farmers leave at least 30 percent crop residue on the soil surface after planting, they reduce soil erosion by as much as 50 percent."

The use of no-till for corn has declined, however, due to farmers' concerns about lower yields in years when the spring weather is unusually cool and wet. In an effort to address these concerns, a number of newly modified no-till equipment options and management techniques will be featured at the expo.

The event will feature vertical tillage equipment, strip-till units, rotary harrows and no-till planter attachments. The equipment, as well as a number of commercial exhibitors, will be located in a 20,000-square-foot heated building. A luncheon speaker also will highlight new Farm Bill legislation currently under final consideration by Congress.

The event costs $10 (including lunch and refreshments) and will begin at 7:30 a.m. and conclude by 3:30 p.m.

The following agricultural suppliers are offering tickets at a discounted price until Jan. 30 as part of their sponsorship of the Expo: The Andersons Inc., Carper’s Farm Supply, Custer Grain Inc., Edon Farmers Co-op., EMP, Hicksville Grain and North Central Co-op.

Tickets also may be purchased from the St. Joseph River Watershed Initiative at the Allen County Soil and Water Conservation District Office by calling (219) 422-3373, ext.3. Tickets will be $12 at the door.

To receive a program flyer, contact one of the commercial sponsors listed above, the St. Joseph River Watershed Initiative at (219) 426-4637, ext.3, or e-mail Bill Lambert, public outreach coordinator, at bill-lambert@iascwcd.org.

Writer: Beth Forbes, (765) 494-2722, bforbes@aes.purdue.edu

Source: Jim Lake, (219) 426-4637, ext. 3, jlake@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722; Beth Forbes, bforbes@aes.purdue.edu; http://www.agriculture.purdue.edu/AgComm/public/agnews/

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; purduenews@purdue.edu


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