GREENWOOD COUNTY COUNTY CONSERVATION DISTRICT- Have you noticed that straw-colored grass in your grassland that the cows won’t eat? Or maybe you are looking for ways to improve the health of the soil in your rangeland or cropland, reduce weed competition in your cropland and reduce erosion? If any of these topics are of interest, mark your calendars for Tuesday, May 28th for the Old World Bluestem and Soil Health Field Day at the Community Building in Neal, Kansas. Registration begins at 9am.
A free catered lunch will be provided at noon. The afternoon session will take us to the field and conclude around 3 PM. Reservations can be made by contacting the Greenwood County Conservation District Office by May 24th at 620-583-5544, extension 3. Guest speakers will include Walt Fick, Kansas State University Agronomy Professor, Keith Harmony, Ft. Hays State University Range Scientist and Dale Strickler, Green Cover Seed Company. These gentlemen come with decades of experience and a wealth of knowledge pertinent to the topics. Identification and control of Old World Bluestems and improving soil health for improved plant performance in rangeland and cropland will be the primary topics of discussion. There will also be demonstrations on proper calibration of sprayers, an update on Sericea lespedeza management and control and the use of cover crops in croplands to control weed pressure and improve soil organic matter. Old World Bluestem (OWB) is a name collectively used to refer to Caucasian bluestem and various cultivars of yellow bluestem. These species were introduced into the U.S. for conservation purposes and as a forage crop for haying and grazing. Seedings of Old World Bluestems in Kansas probably started during the 1930s and continued to some extent into the 1960s. Although a number of species are called bluestems, OWBs are not closely related to the native grasses little bluestem and big bluestem. Old world bluestems are aggressive and prolific seed producers. Today, OWBs can be seen along roadsides and are increasing in our native grasslands. The invasive nature and lower palatability of OWBs allows them to increase once established. Left uncontrolled, OWBs have the potential to dominate our grasslands. Soil Health has been an important topic for years in the farming community, but this field day will give producers an opportunity to discuss how soil health can impact rangeland management and production in addition to observing the use of cover crops and minimal tillage in cropland. Sponsors for this event are the Greenwood County Conservation District, Tallgrass Legacy Alliance, Toronto and Fall River WRAPS, Kansas Alliance for Wetlands and Streams, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Kansas State University Extension Service, Ranch Aid, RanchLand Feed, and Kauffman Seed. USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. If you need accommodation to participate in this event, please mention this when reserving your place. This event is partially funded by the Division of Conservation Soil Health Funds and 319 Clean Water Act Funds.