- Agronomic: barley, canola, wheat
- Fruits: cherries
- Additional Plants: trees
- Animals: bovine
- Crop Production: conservation tillage
- Farm Business Management: whole farm planning
- Production Systems: agroecosystems, holistic management, integrated crop and livestock systems
- Soil Management: earthworms, organic matter
- Sustainable Communities: urban/rural integration, sustainability measures
Priority was to schedule a workshop emphasizing the actual soil impacts on quality factors related to various tillage practices. This included an indoor classroom seminar followed by a day of site visits to soil pits which would reveal impacts of recent use.
Dr Jill Clapperton of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada was key speaker. She was used to participate at the seminar and then field sites in five counties over four days.
Primary objectives were to present this information to key audiences: the regulatory and advisory agency personnel and the producers who must make the decision to employ a given practice.
The opening day program brought in three state-wide researchers, seven county ag agents from two states and 13 representatives from local, regional and state offices of USDA and SWCD’s. Another two Extension Agents were involved in the field site visits. Sixty eight growers representing nine counties and two states were records as attending the session as well. A total of 97 attended the opening session.
County agents involved in the process, contributed time and funds to the program, setting up pit sites in cooperator’s fields, advertising/promoting in their area, providing soil samples for soil testing before the program and proving site samples for growing plants to show variances in soil health by different management practices.
NRCS and SWCD reps were an important component of the audience as many have been under pressure to push a politically correct agenda that does not always pass the test and needs of sustainability.
The workshop was to help bridge the gap between perceived and reality for both advisory and producing sides.