The Stearns County SWCD hosts or help sponsor many workshops and field days each year. If you have an idea for a workshop or field day please contact our office.
Shoreline Alternatives Field Demonstration
The Stearns County SWCD and the Minnesota Erosion Control Assn. partnered to sponsor a classroom workshop and field demonstration on the restoration of native vegetation on shorelines, and the use of many products to stabilize near-shore areas. Greg Berg, Stearns County SWCD Shoreland Specialist, explains the field installation of a shoreline stabilization product called "Green Armor".
Feedlot Runoff Alternatives Field Day
The Stearns County SWCD sponsored a Feedlot Runoff Alternatives and Organic Dairy Field Day at the Neal and Karen Klaphake dairy farm near Melrose in August 2009.
The Klaphakes agreed to participate in a demonstration project to test an innovative approach to managing feedlot runoff by using wood chips. Many farmers, like the Klaphakes, are anxious to find alternatives to collecting and hauling feedlot runoff to the field. The goal of the project was to evaluate the efficiency of a wood chip biofilter in the removal of nitrogen, phosphorus, and E. coli from feedlot runoff.
The SWCD received project funding through grants from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund.
Value of Manure Workshop
The Stearns County SWCD and the University of Minnesota Extension Service held a ‘Value of Manure' workshop in Melrose, MN in January 2012. Participants learned what manure is worth, based on the amount of fertilizer replaced by manure, the yield benefit of manure, and the cost of applying manure. The workshop was interactive and hands-on, giving participants the opportunity to work with data from their own operations. A computer tool, designed to make calculations based on specific inputs, was provided, so that each individual could analyze their own manure application decisions. Participants left with a better understanding of the value of manure in their unique situations, and with the tools and skills needed for future assessments.
This training is put on by the University of Minnesota-Extension and focuses on putting a dollar amount on manure. Participants are asked to bring their own farm data such as fertilizer type, prices, and application costs; amount of nutrients to be applied to a given crop, manure information such as species, volume produced by the operation, acres available for application, soil tests, application method, manure analysis, and application costs. Producers then input their data into a spreadsheet, which can be found at http://www.manure.umn.edu/applied/economics.html. The end result is a better understanding of what their manure is worth, and how it can help to replace fertilizer costs.
Other Educational Activities
Commercial Animal Waste Technician Updates
Stearns County Shoreland Contractor's Workshop
Children's Water Festival
Senior High Ground Water and Wetland Presentations
For more information contact:
320-251-7800 Extension 3