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Cover Crop Tour/Workshop

9:00 am–3:00 pm
Johnson County Fairgrounds
Gary Lesoing, (402) 274-4755,
Nebraska Extension, North Central SARE and the Nebraska Grazing Lands Coalition are sponsoring a Cover Crop Tour/Workshop Tuesday, November 20th. The tour will begin with participants boarding a bus at the Johnson County Fairgrounds 4-H Building in Tecumseh, NE from 9:00 – 9:30 a.m. At 9:30 the bus will travel to the Rod Christen Farm where we will visit several cover crop fields southwest of Tecumseh. One field is a Cover Crop Demonstration site and is a part of the Nebraska Grazing Lands Coalition (NGLC) and University of Nebraska-Lincoln Demonstration Project. This is the third year of the project and Nate Pflueger, UNL graduate student will report on his work on this project. We will also visit nearby fields that have been managed differently and have a diverse mix of cover crop species drilled into them. The bus will then travel to a field near Elk Creek, NE where Rod had turnips aerial seeded over top corn in August. Rod will explain how he plans to manage these fields to be utilized by his cowherd.

The bus will then travel near the Nemaha/Johnson County line to the Ron and Lane Meyer farm near Johnson, NE. The Meyers plant several hundred acres of cover crops and have several fields of cover crops; some were aerial seeded into corn and others drilled following cereal rye harvested for seed. These fields are usually a mix of several diversified cover crop species and are drilled earlier than the aerial seeded cover crops. We will also see a field of cereal rye that was aerial seeded into a soybean field. Ron and Lane usually drill several acres of Elbon rye following soybean harvest that will be used for grazing in the spring by their cowherd. The Meyers will explain how they have been using no-till for several years and in the past 5 or more years have been incorporating cover crops into their cropping system to improve soil health and provide forage for their cowherd.

The tour will then return back to the Johnson County Fairgrounds where lunch will be served. Following lunch Mary Drewnoski, Beef Systems Specialist, Nebraska Extension and Kristen Ulmer, Extension Educator will discuss the feed value of cover crops, the economics of grazing cover crops and research that is being conducted with cattle and cover crops. Gary Lesoing, Extension Educator will discuss some of the on-farm research that is being conducted with cover crops in SE Nebraska. Research is being conducted to evaluate impact of cover crops on crop yields, planting different relative maturities of corn and soybeans to evaluate yield and determine the potential for increasing the window for cover crop seeding. The workshop will conclude with a panel of farmers explaining how they have been using cover crops in their operation. This field day is free to the public and should conclude at 3:30 p.m. While pre-registration isn’t required, it is encouraged so we can plan for lunch.
To register or to find more out about the tour, contact Gary Lesoing at Nebraska Extension in Nemaha County at (402) 274-4755 or at

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