According to Joel Gruver, director of Western's Organic Research Program and assistant professor in the WIU School of Agriculture, the Field Day is slated from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m on Thursday, Aug. 8 at the Dakin Farm shop and the Allison Organic Farm located near Roseville (IL).
"There are many opportunities for improved nutrient management on organic and conventional farms," Gruver explained. "This year's program will offer a balance of technical information and on-farm observations relevant to anyone interested in the advantages of feeding both the soil and the crop."
After registration and welcoming remarks from 9 - 9:30 a.m., the first scheduled speaker is Tom Ferguson, a manure specialist (manureinc.com/) whose company manufactures a pelletized chicken litter product evaluated on the Allison Farm this year.
The keynote presentation by Bill Becker — a.k.a. "The Crop Doctor," a crop consultant based in central Illinois for more than three decades — will begin at 10 a.m. Becker will explore opportunities to optimize crop health and soil biological activity through finely tuned nutrient management.
The morning events will conclude with a farmer panel discussion featuring successful large-scale organic grain farmers in Illinois.
A free lunch will be provided featuring local farm products, followed by an overview by Gruver covering recent research at the Allison Farm.
At approximately 1:30 p.m., the program will transition to the Allison Farm, where Gruver will host a walking tour of the farm's research and demonstration plots. The plot work includes evaluation of a variety of soil amendments and biological seed treatments.
An equipment demonstration is also scheduled (weather permitting).
The event is open free to the public, but registration is required on or before Tuesday, Aug. 6, for those who plan to attend the lunch event.
To register, please contact Andy Clayton at (309) 298-1172 or (217) 322-2639 or the WIU School of Agriculture at (309) 298-1080.
Learn more about Western's Organic Research Program at www.wiu.edu/cbt/agriculture/farms/organic/.
Directions to the Dakin Farm shop (130 20th St., Roseville, IL)If arriving from the north, travel on Rt. 67 five miles south of the Rt. 67 and Rt. 116 intersection in Roseville to County Rd. 20th Ave. N, then turn west and travel four miles on 20th Ave. to the southeast corner of the Allison Farm (intersection of 20th Ave. and 20th St.). Turn left and proceed south 0.7 miles on 20th St. to the Dakin Farm shop.
If arriving from the south, travel on Rt. 67 seven miles north of the Rt. 67 and Rt. 9 intersection in Good Hope to County Rd. 20th Ave. N (two miles north of the Warren County line), then turn west and travel four miles on 20th Ave. to the southeast corner of the Allison Farm (intersection of 20th Ave. and 20th St.). Turn left and proceed south 0.7 miles on 20th St. to the Dakin Farm shop.
Phone: (309) 298-1993 * Fax: (309) 298-1606