Nutrients in farming: What are they and why do we need them?

By Dan Looker, IAWA Writer Iowans have heard a lot about nitrogen fertilizer in recent years. Nitrogen and phosphorus are the two key nutrients that the state is working to manage better through the Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy. In May, the Strategy will be a decade old. As that anniversary nears, it’s worth taking a[…]

Some soil health gains can happen fast

And other surprising facts about regenerative farming By Dan Looker, IAWA contributor AMES, Iowa (IAWA) – Building healthy soil takes work, investment, and time. It can be years before tests show increases in stable organic matter and benefits are seen… at least, that’s a common belief among many people. But that’s not quite right, says[…]

Stream restorations are part of the equation to reducing nutrients in Iowa water 

NORTH RACCOON WATERSHED, Iowa (IAWA) – Many farmers have old oxbow scars on their properties, but they don’t even realize it. Restoring them can make a big difference for water quality.   Oxbow scars are “u-shaped” stream beds that fill with eroded sediment. They often end up being wet spots in a field that have consistently[…]

Slifka recognized as 2022 Coordinator of the Year in fifth annual IAWA Iowa Watershed Awards

Hunter Slifka, watershed project coordinator for the Turkey River Headwaters & Chihak Creek in NE Iowa, was honored as the 2022 Watershed Coordinator of the Year by the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance (IAWA) during the fifth annual Iowa Watershed Awards program. With Slifka’s dedication to water quality in his 62,000-acre watershed, cover crops have expanded from[…]

McCabe recognized with Private Sector Impact Award in fifth annual IAWA Iowa Watershed Awards

Ruth McCabe, Heartland Co-op Conservation Agronomist based in Central Iowa, is the 2022 winner of a statewide Impact Award for her outstanding commitment to water quality. McCabe accepted the Impact Award for the Private Sector at the Iowa Water Conference in Dubuque on Thurs., Sept. 29 during the fifth annual IAWA Iowa Watershed Awards program.[…]

Peterson recognized with Public Sector Impact Award in fifth annual IAWA Iowa Watershed Awards

Tracy Peterson, City of Ames Municipal Engineer, was honored with the Public Sector Impact Award by the Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance (IAWA) during the fifth annual Iowa Watershed Awards program. Peterson oversees a five-year, $6.3 million flood mitigation program that focuses on a section of the South Skunk River that used to flood frequently. That’s[…]

Tanner puls stands in greenhouse

Successful model for water cleaning practices expands to more Iowa communities

By Dan Looker, IAWA contributor Tanner Puls has been the state’s new edge-of-field coordinator only since April 1.  Every day is different as he works to meet the goals of Iowa’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy. Based at the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS,) he works mainly with watershed coordinators around the state. He[…]

Growers – get free nitrogen research on your fields to make better informed decisions

AMES, Iowa (ISU Agronomy) – Iowa State University (Iowa State), has partnered with agricultural service providers, Iowa farmers and their advisers to launch the Iowa Nitrogen Initiative – a first-of-its-kind public-private partnership that will leverage on-farm data to generate continuous improvements in resource use efficiency. The Iowa Nitrogen Initiative is currently recruiting Iowa farmers to[…]

$80 million coming to Iowa & Missouri for Horizon II project to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

By Rebekah Jones, IAWA Communications Director ANKENY, Iowa (IAWA) – An $80 million project to enhance climate-smart markets, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and improve carbon sequestration in agriculture will be funded by USDA. It’s part of a $2.8 billion announcement made by USDA Wednesday morning. The project is a major win for Iowa, bringing millions[…]

Farmers – know about this deadline for priority funding to improve your land

DES MOINES, Iowa (NRCS) — Iowa farmers and private landowners interested in treating resource concerns on their lands have until Oct. 7 to be considered for priority funding for conservation programs administered through USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). Four of the most popular USDA conservation programs are included in this signup period: Agricultural Conservation[…]