North Iowa farmers discuss conservation farming techniques

KLEMME, Iowa – More than 100 north Iowa farmers are getting together to catch up, and share notes.

The Iowa Learning Farms hosted a field day Tuesday, at a farm near Klemme.

The focus of the event is to share information on how to improve water quality.

They want to do that by reducing the amounts of nitrogen and phosphorus that’s going into Iowa’s rivers and streams.

“Maybe it’s just a few ounces of nitrogen or chemicals going into the water, but you take the millions of acres in the Midwest going down out through tile into the Mississippi River and you’ve got a big problem,” says farmer Dean Stromer.

Farmers also spoke about how strip-tillage and cover crops can help to keep the land in the field.

The field day also had a special guest, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Bill Northey.

He spoke about the importance of farmers making the effort to control erosion, and decrease the amount of chemicals that run into waterways.

Northey says events like this really do help to make a difference.

“I think we have a lot of folks here that are interested in trying new practices on their farms, and I think that’s a great opportunity to be able to have them then teach others and engage others. When you have 100 farmers gather together, you have certain momentum that comes out of that,” says Northey.

Many farmers at the event agree that they need to take care of the soil themselves in order to avoid government regulation.

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