EAST LANSING, Mich. — A free plot tour held Aug. 26 from 10 a.m. to noon at Blight Farms, 24010 Division Drive, Albion, Mich., will demonstrate firsthand how nutrients from manure applications can be captured, held and recycled to the following season.
MSU Extension researcher Tim Harrigan planted plots into a wheat stubble field using slurry seeding, which uses a combination of low disturbance tillage, hog manure and cover crop seed planted all in one pass. The plots include turnips and radishes, alone, and in combination with oats, both with and without manure, and drilled compared to slurry seeding.
During the tour, Harrigan will demonstrate the slurry seeding method and discuss past research plots that have tracked nitrogen losses and the ability of the cover crop to uptake nitrogen from manure and release it the following year to a corn crop.
Tour host Ken Blight, a hog and beef producer, will share his methods of successfully using rye cover crops in combination with manure to decrease runoff of manure and capture both the manure liquids and nutrients for reduction in purchased nitrogen the following season.
The event will conclude with a tour of the livestock and cropping farmstead at the Blight Farm and a discussion of opportunities to become verified by the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program.
The public tour will be in combination with the Michigan Soil and Water Conservation Society’s annual event. MAEAP Phase I credits will be available to attendees. Ken, Art and Bill Blight will be farmer hosts for the event.
For more information, contact Natalie Rector at firstname.lastname@example.org or 269-967-6608. For information on all cover crops and options, visit www.mccc.msu.edu. For more information on manure management in Michigan, visit www.animalagteam.msu.edu.