On August 6th, farmers and agricultural professionals interested in incorporating innovative technology into their soil health management systems will be able to attend the 2014 Soil Health Expo at the Vanderburgh County fairgrounds. The event offers a day of informational sessions and demonstrations from precision ag experts.

"Today's technology is allowing farmers and ranchers to farm more efficiently by saving them valuable time and inputs while reducing potential negative impacts to the environment. The 2014 Soil Health Expo will increase their knowledge in several different farming aspects, including the growing interest of using drones for scouting fields. Technology tools, such as drones, may save a farmer thousands of dollars by locating a problem that they didn't realize existed in their fields. It's nearly impossible to solve a problem if you don't know that one exists," said Travis Gogle, the Gibson-Pike County NRCS District Conservationist.

Among the featured speakers is Dr. Randal Reeder, of Ohio State University. Dr. Reeder is considered one of the leading research and education advocates for conservation tillage and no-till. Other speakers include CCSI farmer Mike Shuter, a past president of the Indiana Corn Marketing Council with 30 years of no-till experience, and Paul Gordon, an agricultural and environmental consultant and founder of Gordon Ag Group. 

 The day's presentations will include: 

  • Variable Rate Nutrient Applications With High-Clearance Sprayer Modifications

  • Development and Use of Management Zones in Soil Health Systems

  • Use of Precision Ag Tools for On-Farm Trials

  • Using Technology to Avoid Soil Compaction

  • Drone Use in Field Scouting

"I started work with precision ag a decade ago and I can tell you that the lineup for this workshop reflects the advancements of those technologies. The real beauty is the fact that precision ag can readily be adapted to help improve soil health - no matter what your farm size or comfort with technology," said Lisa Holscher of CCSI.

The cost to attend the 2014 Soil Health Expo is $10. CCA Credits have been requested. PARP credits are also available. Private applicators interested in PARP recertification should bring an additional $10 and their applicator card the day of the event.

Registration is required by July 31 and may be completed online or by calling your local Soil & Water Conservation District.

The field day is presented as a project of the Conservation Cropping Systems Initiative. Additional event partners include Purdue Extension, the USDA, and Southwest Indiana Soil & Water Conservation Districts.