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Ontario Diagnostic Day 5: Cover crop research, measuring soil compaction, and assessing your topsoil

By: Bernard Tobin

September 14, 2021

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It’s time to talk soil health, nutrient management, and more on Day 5 of Ontario Diagnostic Days!

The annual Ontario field crop diagnostic days held at Ridgetown, Elora, and Winchester are again virtual in 2021. Cover crops, soil compaction, topsoil sampling and soybean fertility are the focus of this episode.

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We’ll kick it off with cover crops as University of Guelph researcher Laura Van Eerd and Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) soil management specialist Anne Verhallen tour Van Eerd’s long-term research trials at Ridgetown College. They’ll explore what the research is telling us, including cover crops’ impact on yield, organic matter and soil resiliency.

From there, we’ll take you into a soil pit with OMAFRA soil scientist Jim Warren and OMAFRA engineer Alex Barrie as they highlight the impacts of compaction throughout the soil profile.

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Next up are OMAFRA soybean specialist Horst Bohner and Aaron Stevanus, technical sales manager for the Mosaic company. They’ll dig into soybean nutrient deficiencies and share strategies on how to better feed soybeans.

OMAFRA’s forage and grazing specialist Christine O’Reilly returns to the program. She’s been working on the windrow moisture sampler she profiled on Day 2. She’s made some modifications that forage growers will want to check out.

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Jim Warren returns to wrap up the day with OMAFRA land resource specialist Dan Saurette. They’ll provide a snapshot of the Ontario Topsoil Sampling Project and give viewers a sneak peak at some of the insights they’ll share at the Ontario Agricultural Conference in January. (More about the series after the video.)

The organizing committees of these three highly successful in-field education and learning events are again partnering with crop researchers and extension, along with support from RealAgriculture and a host of sponsors to bring you a series of eight Ontario Diagnostic Days episodes.

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We would like to thank the following sponsoring organizations: The Grain Farmers of Ontario, AGRIS Co-operative, BASF, Bayer/DeKalb, Corteva/Pioneer, Great Lakes Grain, Maizex Seeds, The Mosaic Company, PRIDE Seeds, RealAgriculture, and Syngenta.

The virtual video series gives the OMAFRA field crop team, research colleagues from the University of Guelph, and industry agronomists an opportunity to deliver diagnostic insights in a new way, sharing what attendees have come to expect from Diagnostic Days at Ridgetown, Elora, and Winchester. As part of the offering, continuing education credits (CEU) will also be available.

The series kicked off with this one-hour episode on Tuesday, July 20. A new episode is published every two weeks, on Tuesdays at 9 am Eastern, through to November 2, 2021. Each episode will highlight a general field crop agronomic theme and will be available here on RealAgriculture for viewing, as well as the OMAFRA Field Crop News website. All episodes will also be available in our main podcast feed.

The organizing committees of these three highly successful in-field education and learning events are again partnering with crop researchers and extension, along with support from RealAgriculture and a host of sponsors to bring you a series of eight Ontario Diagnostic Days episodes.

We would like to thank the following sponsoring organizations: The Grain Farmers of Ontario, AGRIS Co-operative, BASF, Bayer/DeKalb, Corteva/Pioneer, Great Lakes Grain, Maizex Seeds, The Mosaic Company, PRIDE Seeds, RealAgriculture, and Syngenta.

The virtual video series gives the OMAFRA field crop team, research colleagues from the University of Guelph, and industry agronomists an opportunity to deliver diagnostic insights in a new way, sharing what attendees have come to expect from Diagnostic Days at Ridgetown, Elora, and Winchester. As part of the offering, continuing education credits (CEU) will also be available.

The series kicked off with this one-hour episode on Tuesday, July 20. A new episode is published every two weeks, on Tuesdays at 9 am Eastern, through to November 2, 2021. Each episode will highlight a general field crop agronomic theme and will be available here on RealAgriculture for viewing, as well as the OMAFRA Field Crop News website. All episodes will also be available in our main podcast feed.

Historically, these in-person diagnostic days have provided some of the best opportunities for certified crop advisors (CCAs) to acquire a broad range of CEUs.

Certified crop advisors will be able to collect eight CEUs by registering for the event here. Registration is required for processing CEU credit requests and can be done up to December 1, 2021. Directions for applying for CEUs will be provided during each episode.

The videos are free and registration is not required for Grain Farmers of Ontario members, media, and those not seeking CEU credits.

Registration Fees  — Only required if applying for CEU Credits

·      $100 (plus HST) for eight CEU credits. A receipt/confirmation email will be provided.

Click here for previous Ontario Diagnostic Days episodes.