Local Interest

The second annual Panhandle Soil Health Workshop sponsored by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Panhandle Research, Extension and Education Center will be an online event for ag producers, consultants, and others in the region.

The workshop will take place on March 5, 2021 from 8 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. on the Zoom cloud meeting platform. Registration is needed and can be done online.

Speakers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS), and the University of Wyoming, as well as producers, will present soil health, soil health programs, and management practices that affect soil health in the region.

The annual University of Nebraska-Lincoln High Plains Ag Lab Research Update and Advisory Board Meeting is going virtual for 2021. It will begin at 1 p.m. MST on Tuesday, February 16, 2021 on the Zoom webinar platform.

At the annual research update, the latest results from crop and livestock research at High Plains Ag Lab (HPAL), as well as administrative and business updates, will be shared with the HPAL advisory board and the public.

Anyone who wants to participate in the meeting should call the High Plains Ag Lab at 308-254-3918 to obtain a link where they can join. Participants will need an internet connection and web browser on their home computer, or else a mobile device connected to a network or internet and the Zoom application installed.

The Animal Manure Management team has opted to change the format of live Land Application Training events this year. In February and March, the team will host a series of three 1.5-hour long zoom sessions that will serve as the first portion of initial land application training. Recertification training and the last segment of initial training will be held at a later date, hopefully in-person. Anyone is welcome to participate in the zoom sessions, but participation at each session will be limited to keep them interactive and informative.

By Jessica Groskopf, Regional Agricultural Economist

On July 17, 2019, Tunnel No. 2 collapsed on the Goshen / Gering-Ft Laramie irrigation canal, leaving 107,000 acres of farmland without water for much of the 2019 growing season. Although repairs to the collapsed tunnel and two other tunnels have been made, challenges remain for irrigators relying on this system.

The metal “ribs” installed to support the tunnels along the canal have reduced the water delivery capacity of the system to 75 percent. This reduction in water capacity raises many questions for farmers and landowners regarding crop insurance coverage for the upcoming 2021 crop year.

Nebraska Extension will conduct chemigation certification training sessions in February and March 2021 at Alliance, Sidney, Bridgeport, and Scottsbluff. Training and testing will also be available online.

Producers who plan to apply crop nutrients and pesticides through irrigation systems during 2021, including those who need to renew their permits, are required to attend a training session and pass the test administered afterward, or else complete the online process.

The preferred option for both initial and recertifying chemigators is the online version. A link to the online program, with directions, is at https://water.unl.edu/cropswater/chemigation

Nebraska Extension will offer ServSafe® Manager Training Program for food service managers and employees March 16-17, 2021 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. in Scottsbluff, at the Panhandle Research and Extension Center, 4502 Avenue I.

Registrations are due by Feb. 22, along with the registration fee. Space is limited, due to occupancy restrictions for the COVID pandemic. For more information or registration form, contact Nebraska Extension at 308-262-1022 or 308-632-1480, or Extension Educator Tammie Ostdiek at tostdiek5@unl.edu.

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