What to consider when spreading manure this November

Even in normal years the most ideal window for spreading stored manure can feel brief. And this year has been anything but normal. With a wet spring delaying planting and ultimately corn harvest, along with the arrival of an early winter, it seems the prime time to spread manure has all but disappeared.  In many […]

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Watch Runoff During Snowmelt for Best Waterway Locations

February 28, 2014 Right now, the winter snow pack continues to accumulate.  Sometime into March winter will transition to spring and the snow will melt.  Some years snowmelts are spectacular with all the snow leaving in a week; other years they are slow and drawn out.  UW-Discovery Farms research has shown that extreme caution needs […]

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Grass waterway near Cashton, Wis.

Identifying Critical Sites and Verifying Land Management Practices

October 11, 2013 Did you ever stop and think about the difference between planning and accomplishing?  We all have plans, like losing a few pounds, saving more money or becoming more sustainable.  There is no question that planning is important.  But while developing a plan can be a challenge, accomplishing your plans are where the […]

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Spreading manure

Take soil temperature into account when spreading fall manure

October 1, 2013 Although we are entering week 5 of the NFL regular season football schedule, the unseasonably warm temperatures haven’t made it feel much like football season so far.  Cooler temperatures are predicted later this week, but if the warm trends experienced in recent weeks continue, soils may take awhile to cool down this […]

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Radish Cover Crop

Q&A on Cover Crops with Matt Ruark

August 30, 2013 1) Are there any drawbacks to a rye cover crop in no-till? Preliminary research at the Arlington Agricultural Research Station shows little to no drawback to no-till corn silage yields (data here). However, there is tremendous benefit to soil by having this soil cover after a corn silage harvest. The key to good management […]

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Fall Field Work

September 25, 2012 In the last blog, Eric did a good job of explaining the risks associated with fall manure applications.  This year the biggest risks will probably be: Cracks in dry soil could allow manure to seep into tile drainage systems, deep into the soil profile, or potentially to groundwater Early fall manure applications […]

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Corn Silage, Soil and Forage Nutrients, and Cover Crops

August 28, 2012  Our 2012 Wisconsin corn silage season is upon us.  The lack of rain this season will cause many producers to harvest more corn silage than usual.   This season’s drought has limited corn   vegetative growth and grain formation.  Even though all the correct nutrients were applied for 150+ bushel corn grain, many […]

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Get prepared for spring soil sampling

March 27, 2012 The time for spring soil sampling is fast approaching.  If you take your own samples, find your probe and bucket, and re-stock your supply of bags.  Otherwise, call your agronomist and get your name on the list for spring work. Guidelines for soil sampling are provided in the University of Wisconsin – […]

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Karst landscapes – Wisconsin and other states working to better understand land management challenges

December 2, 2011 The term “karst” is defined as a geologic formation shaped by the dissolution of a layer or layers of soluble bedrock, usually carbonate rock such as limestone or dolomite, producing fissures, sinkholes, underground streams, and caverns.  The dissolution of bedrock from percolating water can enlarge the fractures/bedding planes or form underground caverns […]

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Changes to Protect Water Quality

November 15, 2011 After a meeting where information on nutrient and sediment losses coming from a variety of agricultural systems was presented, a producer approached us to request a farm visit.  This farmer was concerned that his farm had exactly the same circumstances as one of our past Discovery Farms and he wanted to reduce […]

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