Farmers gather to hear about soil health


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WEST LIBERTY – Tom and Nancy Smith hosted an agricultural program on Sept. 5 on their scenic Mt. Tabor Road farm. This event was sponsored by the Logan County Land Trust in partnership with the Logan and Champaign county soil and water conservation districts and OSU Extension.

Frank Gibbs, the “Soils Guy” of Hancock County, was one of four speakers. He spoke about “Soil Health” and how night crawlers (worms) are nature’s wonders to the soil and how these creatures are doing good 24-7. Water infiltration is increased into the soil, thus making soil more resilient to the severe storms experienced lately. Tillage and the use of “big iron” is not good for the enhancement of these creatures of the soil. Tillage destroys their home, their habitat and buries the food source that sustains their existence.

“Much of our water problems could be greatly reduced if the soil was allowed to develop and grow more worms and other beneficial bacteria and fungi,” said Gibbs.

The crowd enjoyed a meal from Paul’s Catering, near Kingscreek, and the subject matter, then moved toward the topic of Cover Crops and all their benefits to agricultural crop rotation. The speakers on this subject were Dave and Jay Brandt of Carrol and Nathan Brause of Crawford County. They discussed the good that cover crops can do for the soil, including improving the quality of the growing products that follow, such as corn and soybeans.

Knowing your “Health of your Soil” was discussed by Ag Consultant Todd Dallas. He talked about taking soil samples and monitoring soil health and creating a baseline for where soils are in your fields and monitoring the changes that take place in the soil through a no-till crop system and the use of cover crops.

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Info from the Logan County Land Trust

Info from the Logan County Land Trust