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February 2, 2017

The annual Irrigation and Nitrogen Management Clinic was hosted February 2nd at the Thumper Pond Resort in Ottertail, MN. We had over 80 people in attendance! Participants were from all sectors of agriculture, including producers, industry representatives, and local and state government partners. Attendance was especially important this year because of the upcoming implementation of the Nitrogen Fertilizer Management Plan by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.

We had a great turnout for the meeting.

Attendees had the chance to hear from Nathan Wiese and Jim Lahn about the great programs that the SWCD offers, including the Irrigation Scheduling Program and the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP). Anne Struffert of University of Minnesota Extension spoke about nitrogen management on sandy soils, which included discussions of best management practices and fertilizer options. Luke Stuewe of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture explained the intricacies of the Nitrogen Fertilizer Management Plan and Rule. Our keynote speaker, Professor Saleh Taghvaeian, travelled up from Oklahoma State University to talk about irrigation sensor technologies, which included a discussion of costs, usefulness, and the practical challenges presented by multiple brands of sensors. He also presented an interesting perspective on the challenges faced by irrigators in Oklahoma.

We were also fortunate to have local area experts in irrigation and agronomy set up informational booths for participants to visit.

Thank you again to everyone who attended and helped make the Clinic a success!