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July 7, 2004     Sentinel Tribune
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July 7, 2004

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TRIBUNE Area Focus Wednesday, July 7, 2004 Page 7 en rate field studies in southern MN Ext. Educator, Resources and Utilization heavy rains we since May, are con- about the availability applied nitrogen (N) this nutrient has out of the root zone. results of N leach- the goil profile is could reach water sources thus nitrates in drink- more information issue access the web www.extension. enews N is added for any other nutrient The right of N optimizes crop minimizing loss to the environment. an inaccurate of N reduces profits ground and surface Balancing economi- rates with increased concern over negatively affecting quality makes nitro- even more uncontrollable like precipitation and affect the of N from the soil and of N needed by a amount of N can change from to location and from Continual stud- corn yield to fertilizer N take variations into discussion of how is the optimal rate for corn prof- and to protect the continues. are 3 watersheds in Minnesota con- size demonstra- ha evaluating prof- but en4ronmerrt-ally They include Peter Wellhead Area and Seven Peter), Lower (Mapleton) and River (St. on-farm demon- growers can judge which rate of optimizes their agronomic, economic, perform- Kevin Kuehner, Seven Mile Creek watershed coordinator. To initiate each demon- stration, a 50-acre portion of a farmer's field was selected with soybeans being the pre- viously grown crop. Cooperating producers then applied nitrogen in 10-acre width strips at five different application rates of 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180 pounds N per acre. The nitrogen source was mainly fall applied anhydrous ammonia. On the majority of sites a smaller 2.5-acre strip of 0 pounds of applied N was used as a control. The N- Rate plots were harvested using combines equipped with global positioning enabled field monitors. The harvest was documented, calibrated and verified by a certified professional inde- pendent crop consultant, Bruce Nowlin of Blue Earth Crop Consulting. The yield data was then analyzed by Dr. David Mulla and Jose Hernandez at the University of Minnesota Precision Ag Center to determine Economically Optimum Nitrogen Rates (EONR). "Farmers have been surprised by the results of these studies," says Kuehner. They were espe- cially surprised when they found out that producers could save anywhere between $7-$14/acre by sim- ply lowering their normal N application rates, even dur- ing 200+bu./acre years (2003), while maintaining profitable yields. In just nitrogen alone, this could save individual producers $10,000 or more a year in fertilizer costs. Even the zero-applied N-strips aver- aged an amazing 132 bushels/acre of corn. Dave Mogensen, a St. Peter farmer, has participat- ed in the demonstrations for the past five years in the Seven Mile Creek Watershed and St. Peter Wellhead Protection Area. 'The N-rate plots have proven to me that we can get by with less N when compared to what we were applying before," says Dave. "Because of the plot work we have reduced our rates by 20-30 pounds." Results from the three-year study around St. Peter have shown that Economically Optimum Nitrogen Rates (EONR) ranged from 90-120 lbs. N/acre. In a recent following concerned & responsible and businesses support the !es, churches, and their activities. Nurse000. Landscape center in S.W. Minnesota" S. 4th Street 629-3485 ]'racy 23 Ph. 532-9430 Marshall Ime MN 274-5464 Tracy, MN. 629-4510 Walnut lements, Sanborn, , Revere, Lucan, Avoca - MAIN 752-7352 / Westbrook / Walnut Grove Funeral Home 507-274-6700 Westbrook, MN. 507-859-2161 Walnut Grove, MN Maynard's Food Center 274-5555 Westbrook, MN. Sentinel Tribune Westbrook, MN Phone 274-6136 1-800-410-1859 Koblegard Auto 859-2220 Walnut Grove, MN. BETTER INFORMED VOTERS i,= o,, t.4,=, lk=.,= i= t,,.,,=.. G-rove, ]VdN. 507-274-6700 MN Your local long term provlder since 1961 149 First Ave. Westbrook, MN 56183 507-274-6155 farmer survey of SW Minnesota producers, the average N rate applied per acre was 134 lbs. University of Minnesota studies have shown the EONR of 99 lb/A N in field size plots (5 years) and 105 lb/A N in small size plots (10 years). For more informa- tion on these studies access the web at: http:Hwww.extension.umn.e du/distribution/cropsys- tems/DC7936.html The results from the study validated the U of M recommendation that 120 lb/acre N is adequate for the vast majority of area corn farmers and yield goals. The University of Minnesota nitrogen recommendation for soil with medium to high organic matter with an expected yield of 150 bu/ac is 120 lb/ac N, at 175 bu/ac the recommendation is 140 lb]ac N and for a yield goal of 200 bu/ac it is 160 lb/ac N. "Less than 10 percent of the farms studied required N rates higher than University rec- ommendations, and even in the best yielding years (approaching 200 bu/ac), the optimum N application rates were about 125 lb/ac N" says Dr. David Mulla, Soil Scientist at the University of Minnesota. "These results are right in line with what we have found in the Lower Maple River and Watonwan River watersheds. The more years of data we can get, the more confidence farmers will have in the recommendations for cutting back on N-rates," says Bruce Nowlin, crop con- sultant. In that study over 40 farmers scattered throughout south central MN participated. Results showed that if farmers were applying a common rate of 150 lbs. dacre N after soy- beans, N-rates could be safe- ly reduced by 10-30 lbs./acre without risking loss of profit. The optimum N-rate in that study was found to be about 111 lb/acre N. The main goal of these watershed-based projects is to give growers better ways to address environmental issues without sacrificing the productivity or prosperity of their operation. It is planned that these farmer-backed, on-farm demonstrations will continue in future years. For more information about On-Farm Nitrogen Rate Demonstrations access the following web site at no/ or call Kevin Kuehner, Seven Mile Creek watershed coordinator at (507) 881 9440, Kari Christnagel, Blue Earth SWCD at 507-345- 4744 x 4, Bruce Johnson, Watonwan River watershed coordinator, Bruce Nowlin, Blue Earth Consulting at (507)947-3362 or Dr. David Mulla, UM Soil Scientist at 612-625-6721. Park full for fourth Thursday morning most of the spots were filled at the Plum Creek Park. The popular park fills up early on holiday weekends. Minnesota family physicians offer advice on keeping kids safe outdoors The start of summer means MN kids will be spending a lot of time out- side. It also means they'll be exposed to the sun, as well as insects that bite and carry disease. Minnesota family physicians remind parents there are certain precau- tions they can take to keep their kids safe and comfort- able this summer. "Parents want to protect their kids from sunburn or insect bites, but often times they hear conflicting reports about what products to use," said John Barsanti, a St. Paul family physician and member of the MN Academy of Family Physicians. "I get a lot of questions from moms and dads about what type of and how much sun screen and insect repellent is safe for kids." Sunscreen -- Family physicians advise using a sunscreen with a SPF (sun protection factor) of 15 or greater, even on cloudy days. (A product's SPF tells you how much longer you can stay in the sun without burn- ing.) Choose a broad-spec- trum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays. "Don't skimp on sun- screen," Dr. Barsanti said. "Generally, you should plan on using about an ounce per child, per application." Other recommendations include having your children wear hats, sunglasses and clothing that will screen out the harmful rays. (If you can't see through the materi- al, it should be okay.) Family physicians also suggest stay- ing out of the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. (when the rays are the strongest), applying sunscreen 30 min- utes before going outside, and re-applying every two to three hours, or sooner, if your child is sweating or has been swimming, even if the sunscreen is waterproof. Babies younger than six months should be kept out of direct sunlight, and sun- screen should not be applied. Insects -- Protecting your children from bugs such as mosquitoes and ticks is also a daunting task. Your best bet is to keep them indoors during the evening and early morning. If that's not possible, use protective clothing and apply insect repellent with as little DEET as needed, but no more than 30-percent DEET. Repellent should not be applied to infants younger than two months old. The Centers for Disease control reports that a recent study shows a prod- uct containing 23.8% DEET provided an average of five hours of protection from mosquito bites and ticks. A higher concentration of DEET does not mean that it protects better - just that it lasts longer. The challenge of keeping kids bite-free has intensified as people have become more aware of the West Nile virus. The virus is transmitted when an infected mosquito bites a person. However, not all mosquitoes are infected and even if they were, not everyone who gets bitten by an infected mosquito will get the virus. "It's important for par- ents to take steps to keep mosquitoes away from their kids," Dr. Barsanti said. "However, it is not necessary to overreact and keep them tucked inside. Severe cases of West Nile are still rare among healthy children." Auto & R.V. Repair Wheel Alignment Glass Installed We have one of the South- west's most modern body shops, with separate paint- booth - all makes - KLASSE Sales & Service Westbrook, MN. 507- 274-6166 ARE YOU AT RISK FOR STROKE?... 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