Thanks to the Ohio legislature, producers in Fulton County have another tool in the nutrient management toolbox to help protect Lake Erie water quality.
The Ohio Working Lands Small Grains program provides an incentive for producers to establish small grains in a crop rotation that can be used for manure application following harvest. By default, it will expand the manure application window during warmer months and relieve the stress on manure storage during the winter and early wet springs.
Producers with eligible cropland acreage, successfully establishing either wheat, barley, oats, cereal rye, triticale or spelts, then harvesting it for seed and subsequently applying manure and establishing a cover crop or double crop soybeans, will receive a $75 per acre cost-share payment through the program. Fulton Soil and Water Conservation District will manage the program sign-up, verification of eligibility, and crop establishment. Soil tests and records of manure application will be required to be submitted as well to the SWCD.
“The Ohio Working Lands Small Grains program will give producers an additional opportunity to apply manure to a growing crop in warmer weather and hopefully avoid late winter or early spring manure holding capacity problems,” said Kirk Hines, chief of the Ohio Department of Agriculture Division of Soil and Water Conservation “Livestock producers need options, and this program features an incentive to implement a useful and viable option for manure application.”
The program is just one of several filling up Western Lake Erie Basin producer toolboxes this spring, regardless of operation type. Fulton SWCD is taking sign-ups for the Working Lands Hay Buffer program that targets environmentally sensitive cropland areas and encourages the establishment of perennial forages to provide year-round vegetative cover.
For more information or to sign-up for programs, contact Eric Riefers at 419-337-9661 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.