Agriculture briefs, Feb. 12

Soil workshop canceled

The Soil Health Workshop scheduled for today in Bucyrus has been canceled, and may be rescheduled for a later date.

For more information, call Cindy at (419) 334-5016.

USDA accepts applications for conservation grants

U.S. Department of Agriculture is accepting applications for competitive grants to develop and accelerate

conservation approaches and technologies on private agricultural and forest lands.

Conservation Innovation Grants are designed to contribute to pioneering conservation work on agricultural and forest lands, according to a release from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

About $15 million is available nationwide through USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service. State and local governments, federally recognized Indian tribes, non-governmental and educational organizations, private businesses and individuals are eligible to apply.

Vilsack said priority will be given to applications that relate to nutrient management, energy conservation, soil health, air quality, climate change, wildlife, economics, sociology, environmental markets, food safety, historically underserved groups or assessments of past CIG projects.

For more information, visit To apply electronically, visit

Gypsy moth open house rescheduled for Thursday

An information program about gypsy moth treatment in Hancock County has been rescheduled for 6-8 p.m. Thursday at Delaware Township Hall, 601 S. Main St., Mt. Blanchard.

Another workshop for Hardin, Auglaize and Allen counties has been rescheduled for 6-8 p.m. Feb. 20 at OSU Extension Office, 1021 W. Lima St., Kenton.

Aerial treatments are planned in early spring to slow the spread of the destructive insect.

Open houses in treatment areas are to offer attendees an opportunity to speak with people working on the program, learn about the pest and view maps of treatment areas.

Gypsy moths are invasive insects that attack more than 300 types of trees and shrubs with oak being the preferred species. In its caterpillar stage, the moth feeds heavily on the leaves of trees and shrubs limiting their ability to photosynthesize.

A healthy tree usually can withstand only two years of defoliation before it is permanently damaged or dies.

For more information, visit

Free nutrient management training offered in Findlay

Crop advisors in the western Lake Erie basin can register for a free nutrient management training session Feb. 25-26, sponsored by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and

Ohio State University Extension, in collaboration with IPM Institute of North America.

Certified crop advisers can become technical service providers qualified to write nutrient management plans.

With TSP certification in nutrient management planning, growers and advisers can take advantage of funding available through NRCS Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

EQIP provides financial assistance to growers to hire qualified professionals to create and implement approved plans addressing the 4Rs: Right fertilizer source, at the Right rate, at the Right time and in the Right place.

“There are not enough qualified TSPs to meet demand for nutrient management plans in western Lake Erie basin counties in Ohio, Indiana and Michigan,” said Thomas Green, president of the institute. “When nutrients are lost from cropland, farmers lose money and water quality can suffer. We want to help growers and their advisers gain access to NRCS programs to improve resource use efficiency and water quality in the western Lake Erie basin.”

The class is 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Feb. 25 with an option to participate in additional training for nutrient management plan writing Feb. 26, hosted by Greg LaBarge, educator with Ohio State University Extension.

Training is to take place at the Findlay Conference Center, 200 E. Main Cross St., Findlay. Attendees are responsible for arranging their accommodations by calling (419) 422-5682 or visiting

Laptops are required for each participant. A limited number of laptops

are available to those who cannot provide their own. Indicate this when registering.

To register, call Kip Studer at (567) 213-1397 or email him at

Participants should be certified crop advisers or certified professional crop consultants in good standing.

Ohio State survey to explore farm custom work rates

Agricultural economists from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences want to know how much Ohio growers engage farm workers and machinery operators as part of the college’s Ohio Farm Custom Rate Survey.

The survey is conducted biannually by Barry Ward, production business management leader for OSU Extension, as a means of gauging farm work completed by others, which is often referred to as “custom farm work” or “custom work.”

The survey is targeted at producers who hired custom farm work and

those who performed the work, Ward said.

“Custom workers are often engaged due to a farm business owner’s lack of proper equipment, lack of time or lack of expertise for a particular operation,” he said. “A ‘custom rate’ is the amount agreed upon by both parties to be paid by the custom work customer to the custom work provider.”

Data gathered is published by OSU Extension and used by Extension professionals in their work with Ohio communities, Ward said.

The survey has proved useful over the years as custom farming providers and customers often negotiate an agreeable custom farming rate by utilizing OSU Extension survey results, he said.

“We need farmers’ assistance in securing up-to-date information about farm custom work rates, machinery and building rental rates, and hired labor costs in Ohio,” Ward said. “We would ask that you respond even if you know only a few rates.

“We want information on actual rates, either what you paid to hire custom work or what you charged if you perform custom work,” he said.

The survey can be completed online at The deadline is March 7.

To learn more about the Ohio State Farm Management program, visit