Serving Minnesota and Northern Iowa.

Crop Nutrient Management Conference is Feb. 11

By Janet Kubat Willette
jkubat@agrinews.com

Date Modified: 02/24/2014 11:22 PM

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MANKATO, Minn. — Nitrogen will be the focus of the fifth annual Minnesota Crop Nutrient Management Conference.

The conference is 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 11 at the Verizon Wireless Center in Mankato. Registration starts at 8:30 a.m.

Registration is free due to the sponsorship of several individual fertilizer suppliers, said George Rehm, a retired University of Minnesota Extension educator who helps organize the conference.

Preregistration is requested, but no one will be turned away at the door, Rehm said. As of Jan. 31, more than 230 people had pre-registered by calling Ryan Lemickson, of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture at 612-209-9181. People also can register by sending an email to nutri.conf@state.mn.us or going to the conference website, mawrc.org/events.html.

The conference will focus on nitrogen because that is on everyone's mind from both an environmental and economic standpoint, Rehm said. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture put out its fertilizer management plan and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has it's nutrient reduction strategy, which focuses primarily on nitrogen and phosphorus.

The speaker lineup includes Dan Kaiser, a University of Minnesota soil scientist. Kaiser has done a lot of plant analysis over the last couple of years; the focus is on sampling corn plants at various points in the growing season and looking at the results to see if in-season application of fertilizer is needed, Rehm said.

Kevin Kuehner, of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, will talk about edge of field monitoring he's done in southeastern Minnesota's Fillmore and Houston counties. His presentation is titled, "From Field to Stream: Measuring Nutrient Losses in Southeast Minnesota."

John Lamb from the U of M will talk about tools for assessing nitrogen needs during the growing season and Fabian Fernandez, the new assistant professor of nutrient management at the university, will talk about the risks of in-season nitrogen applications.

DeLon Clarksean from Helena Fertilizer in Canby will give a dealer perspective on in-season nitrogen applications and Brownton farmer Joe Griebe will talk about his nutrient management focus.

Jeff Vetsch, a soil scientist at Southern Research and Outreach Center in Waseca, will give a presentation, "Fertilizer Management in Conservation Tillage Systems."

Other presentations will be made by representatives from Discovery Farms, the Minnesota Ag Water Resources Center and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.

For more information, call Lemickson at 612-209-9181 or Rehm at 507-263-9127.