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Crops Featured During Ag Expo Demonstrations
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Ag Expo 2011 is no different, and in fact, there may be more opportunities for learning than ever before. This year’s show features a wealth of presentations, discussions and demonstrations aimed at everyone from livestock producers to field crop growers, parents, gardeners and high school students who are considering


Source: Michigan State University, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Crops Featured During Demonstrations and Education Sessions at Ag Expo


Education has always been at the heart of Ag Expo. Whether it’s a seed dealer explaining the features of a new hybrid to growers, a manufacturing company representative demonstrating the options available on a new tractor or a Michigan State University (MSU) researcher discussing the benefits of a new management practice, everyone is on site to help visitors learn.

Ag Expo 2011 is no different, and in fact, there may be more opportunities for learning than ever before. This year’s show features a wealth of presentations, discussions and demonstrations aimed at everyone from livestock producers to field crop growers, parents, gardeners and high school students who are considering college.

Ag Expo runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., July 19 and 20, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., July 21. Admission to the grounds and parking at Farm Lane and Mt. Hope Road are free.

The following demonstrations and education sessions focus on crops:

Getting calibrated: Measuring sprayer speed, nozzle flow and pressure
Join MSU Extension specialists who will discuss how to properly calibrate a sprayer, taking ground speed and nozzle flow rate into consideration. They will also discuss how different nozzles produce different droplet sizes at different pressures and how this affects spray coverage. Ned Birkey, MSU Extension educator, will present this session at 10 a.m., July 19–21, in the Farm Focus Tent (Avenue D and First Street).

Going afield with Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
Learn about MSU Extension pest management initiatives and the effects of MSU Extension educational outreach. Demonstration projects will include weed seedling identification, insect and disease identification, insect monitoring and disease scouting. MSU Extension educator Bruce Mackellar will present this session at 2:30 p.m., July 19–21, at the Crop and Soil Science Corner.

We’ve got it covered: Learn how cover crops can benefit your farm
Witness the benefits of several cover crop species/varieties that will be exhibited at Ag Expo. Computers will be available to demonstrate the recently released Web-based Michigan cover crop decision tool for farmers, agricultural consultants, educators and Natural Resources Conservation Service personnel to use to make cover crop selections on farms. Support will be available for cover crop implementation through the Great Lakes Cover Crop Initiative watershed coordinators. Watershed coordinators will work directly with individuals and document their on-farm practices. Cover crop publications, bulletins and posters will be available. Anyone interested in cover crops can find this session presented by Dale Mutch and Paul Gross, MSU Extension educators, at 9:30 a.m., July 19–21, at the Crop and Soil Science Corner.

Get the biggest bang for your buck with nitrogen rates
This field trial demonstration features corn that has been side-dressed with varying rates of nitrogen to show how the crop responds visually to different nitrogen rates. Visitors will have the opportunity to view posters showing the results of past years’ corn nitrogen rate research trials with pictures and graphs and receive handout materials on MSU’s Maximum Return to Nitrogen (MRTN) recommendations as well as on the correlating field trials and other applicable topics. Extension educators will be present to answer any questions or talk further on the fertility research for Michigan growers. Emily Sneller, an MSU Extension educator, will present this session at 10:30 a.m., July 19–21, at the Crop and Soil Science Corner.

Protecting yourself in and around grain bins
It’s no secret that agriculture can be a dangerous industry and caution around grain bins can prevent many hazardous situations from arising. Michigan Agricultural Commodities Inc. facility manager Chuck Kunisch will rely on previous experience to provide the audience with safety tips for operations involving corrugated steel bins. Kunisch will review safe procedures for grain bins on at 11:30 a.m., July 19, at the Farm Focus Tent (Avenue D and First Street).

Boosting your farm’s bottom line with a hoophouse
Interested in using hoophouses or high tunnels to extend the season, increase yields, and decrease disease and pest pressures? Come hear how the MSU Student Organic Farm has been using hoophouses for more than 10 years to produce food year-round without any supplemental heat or light. Adam Montri, MSU Extension specialist in the Department of Horticulture, will discuss hoophouses at 9:30 a.m. on July 20 in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) tent.

Calling all irrigators: Learn about your water use reporting requirements
Michigan’s legal requirements for large volume use (70 gallons per minute pump capacity) have evolved over the last century. Stop by at Ag Expo to learn about the legal guidelines that allow producers to make use of this renewable natural resource. Lyndon Kelley, MSU Extension educator, will present this session at 1:30 p.m., July 19–21, in the CANR Tent (East of Main Food Tent).

Keep beetles from invading again
Japanese beetles damage hundreds of acres of horticultural crops and countless yard and garden plants every summer. Learn how you can protect you property from these destructive insects using organic solutions and the latest MSU research results. Bob Bricault, MSU Extension educator, will discuss how to stop beetles from invading your farms and gardens, at 10:45 a.m., July 21, in the CANR Tent (East of Main Food Tent).

Garden wisely: Don’t guess – soil test!
A wise gardener uses soil testing as a tool to help protect water quality while growing healthy, productive plants. Learn about the new MSU soil-testing kit that includes a self-mailer to make it convenient and less time consuming. Find out about the new soil-test interpretation website that provides user-friendly fertilizer recommendations for your lawn and vegetable garden. Mary Wilson, state coordinator for the Master Gardener Volunteer Program, will discuss the importance of soil testing at 10:45 a.m., July 19, at the CANR Tent (East of Main Food Tent).

“Lettuce” help you squash diseases in your garden
Learn how to prevent diseases that can wreak havoc on your vegetable plants. Gary Heilig. MSU Extension educator, will share tips on how to prevent downy mildew, blossom end rot, wilt diseases and more to ensure a bountiful harvest. Heilig will be discussing garden diseases at 10:45 a.m., July 20, at the CANR Tent (East of Main Food Tent).

For more information about Ag Expo, call 800-366-7055, or visit www.agexpo.msu.edu. The MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources sponsors Ag Expo.