One of the top states in the country for use of cover crops is hosting the National Conference on Cover Crops and Soil Health in one week. The conference is right here in Indiana December 7 and 8 at the Sheraton Indianapolis Hotel at Keystone Crossing. The Soil and Water Conservation Society is hosting the conference and that group’s CEO Clare Lindahl says there will be a wide variety of presenters. But the stars are farmers.
“When we sought to put together this agenda, the committee stepped back looked at what all the questions are that are being asked about cover crops right now,” she said. “With the agenda we sought to answer all of them. We answered the questions for the farmer who has never used cover crops before, like how do I pick my species, how do I manage them, to the farmer who has a lot of experience and maybe wants to diversify or do something a little bit different. We have a lot of farmer speakers from a lot of different regions and states because we know that they work differently in different states. Those are going to be the stories I think people are really anxious to hear about. How are they really using them?”
“We’ve got speakers from agri-business talking about how there’s cash in cover crops. We have speakers in academia sharing the latest and greatest research on cover crops.”
The more you see green fields around the state after harvest, the more you know farmers are adding cover crops to their lineup. Lindahl told HAT it’s all about roots in the ground year-round.
“When we pull that crop off and we can put that cover crop on we can protect our soil from erosion. We can hold on to our nutrients. We can build our soil health. Cover crops have lots of benefits, and as we realize those benefits and share the stories about how to manage them to be beneficial, they get adopted more and more. I think it’s a great sign of what’s to come and continue.”
Some of the presentations are: Growing a Revolution – Bringing Our Soil Back to Life –
David Montgomery, University of Washington; Farmer Plenary Panel: Experiences with Cover Crops and Soil Health – Dan DeSutter, Indiana Farmer; Trey Hill Maryland Farmer; Jimmy Emmons, Oklahoma Farmer; Moderator: Wayne Honeycutt, Soil Health Institute; Top Ten Ways Cover Crops Build Soil Health Rob Myers, Sustainable Agriculture and Research Education.
Learn more at the conference website here.