Tricia Braid

Jan 14, 2016  |  Today's News |  Conservation

The Illinois Council on Best Management Practices (ICGA is a member of the Council) is partnering in a series of one-day seminars to provide farmers with the latest information about soil and water conservation practices. IL Corn urges its members and corn farmers to consider best management practices on your farms. To meet the voluntary expectations of the Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy, it will take action on every crop acre in Illinois. What’s your strategy for nutrient management? If you’re not sure, these seminars might be a good place to start.

The series begins January 26 at the iHotel Conference Center in Champaign. Other seminars will be held throughout the month in Godfrey on January 27 and Milan on January 28.

Each seminar will have its own agenda. However, all three will include local agricultural producers and resource experts will share information and personal experiences on soil health improvement options, cover crop success, and wise nutrient management techniques.

“These seminars provide an opportunity for farmers, producers and land owners to gain valuable information on the environmental and economic benefits of cover crops,” said Steve Chard, Bureau Chief of IDOA Land and Water Resources. “This is also a great chance for those individuals to network with other farmers and producers in order to gain knowledge, insight and skills that can benefit their farms and their bottom line.”

Cover crops are plants, typically grasses or legumes, seeded into farm fields either within or outside of the regular growing season. These crops can play an important role in erosion control, nutrient management, weed control, soil conservation, and soil health.  Research suggests they have a significant competitive advantage compared to the more traditional management practices, and they also may offer production benefits.  A survey of Midwestern farmers by USDA’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Program revealed higher corn and soybean yields in fields where cover crops had been planted. 

The seminars will be held from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The cost is $20 per person and lunch will be provided.  To register, or learn more about each seminar’s agenda, simply go online to the Champaign County Soil and Water Conservation District website at and click the CCS logo.  Payment can be made by check or credit card.

In addition to the Illinois Department of Agriculture, seminar coordinators include the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, American Farmland Trust, Illinois Stewardship Alliance, Illinois Council on Best Management Practices, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, and local Soil and Water Conservation Districts. 

Jan. 26      
iHotel & Conference Center
1900 South First Street
Champaign, IL.
Elliot Lagacy
(217) 353-6603

Jan. 27      
Lewis & Clark Community College
5800 Godfrey Rd (The Commons)
Godfrey, IL.
Gary Albers
(618) 476-7230

Jan. 28      
The Camden Center
2701 First Street East
Milan, IL.    
Marty McManus
(309) 738-7227