Equipping farmers to build resilient farms and communities.
The first field days of our main summer and autumn field day season started this week with an event on Tuesday in La Porte City, hosted by Terry Ward (at right above). Terry walked attendees through how he grows and chops rye for silage for his neighbor Dick Blough's dairy cattle.

It was a busy start to field day season! Three other field days across the state this week covered topics ranging from heirloom tomatoes and food forests, to identifying livestock parasites and the impact of cover crops on water quality and soil health.

Confused by how prevented planting crop insurance works with cover crops? Even if you can't plant corn or soybeans, you can keep weeds suppressed, hold onto nutrients and even fix some nitrogen by making sure you have cover crops on those acres.
The latest research from PFI's Cooperators' Program
PFI cooperators Wade Dooley and Dick Sloan looked to determine if terminating a cereal rye cover crop before accumulating 3,000 pounds per acre of biomass would allow corn to be planted sooner than 10 days after termination without sacrificing yield or increasing disease incidence.
In this study, PFI cooperators Bruce and Connie Carney and Dave and Meg Schmidt sent samples of their 100% grass-fed beef ribeyes to a lab for analysis of fatty acid composition and meat quality characteristics like tenderness and eating experience. Because proper grass-finishing is necessary to ensure an enjoyable eating experience, the study also looked at whether ultrasound is useful at determining the best harvest window for grass-fed cattle.
Spring fundraiser update: so close!
We've almost reached our goal! Thanks to your generous support, we're at $29,355 for our spring fundraising drive, just $645 away from our goal.

We know how important PFI is to you, and we want to be able to better tailor our work to your needs. Will you be the one to push us over the finish line?
Sign up to receive our new quarterly
farm transfer e-newsletter. First issue is out next week!
Practical Farmers is starting a new quarterly e-newsletter dedicated to sharing events, resources and information related specifically to farmland transition.

An anonymous Practical Farmers of Iowa member generously donated a unique and valuable ring as a way to help us raise money to support our work. The ring is a size 7 and features a Michigan stone, three diamonds and 14-karat yellow gold, with an appraised value of $1,400. Proceeds from the sale of this ring will support Practical Farmers of Iowa.

Tuesday, June 11 | 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. | Bloomfield
Hosted by: Samuel Maibach

Thursday, June 13 | 3 – 5:30 p.m. | West Union
Hosted by: Loran Steinlage

Friday, June 14 | 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. | Elliot, IA
Hosted by: Ron Mardesen
Sunday, June 9 | Charles City
Hosts: Wendy Johnson & Johnny Rafkin
RSVP has passed but walk-ins are welcome

There is one more grazing group getting together this spring! Head to Charles City and join Wendy Johnson and Johnny Rafkin for a pasture walk and a chance to discuss grazing with fellow livestock farmers! This event runs from 4:30-7 p.m. and will have a meal provided.
June 9: Meet-up - Grazing Group
4:30-7 p.m. | Charles City

June 11: Field Day - Organic Dairy Cattle
10 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Bloomfield

June 13: Field Day - Hybrid Rye
3-5:30 p.m. | West Union

June 14: Field Day - Pastured Pig Health
10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. | Elliott

June 18: Field Day - Small Grains
10:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Dyersville

June 18: Field Day - On-Farm Habitat
5-8 p.m. | Lewis
June 19: Field Day - Grazing Native Perennials
10 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Peterson

3 - 5 p.m. | Boone

June 20: Field Day - Diverse Rotations
5-8 p.m. | Keota

June 21: Field Day - Pumpkins and Produce
1-3 p.m. | Algona

June 25: Field Day - Organic Weed Control
10 a.m. - 1 p.m. | Decorah

June 26: Field Day - 30 Years of Small Grains
6-8:30 p.m. | Fostoria, OH
Jack Boyer of Reinbeck was featured in The New Food Economy: Glyphosate use increases dramatically across the Midwest

Dick Sloan of Rowley, Chad Ingels of Randalia and Steve Hopkins of Des Moines were featured in the Spokesman: Reviving Lime Creek

( Note: The podcast at the bottom of the story includes more of the interview with Dick, starting at about 19 minutes. )

George Naylor of Churdan was featured in The Natural Farmer: The History of Food Sovereignty and the Path to a Caring Society

Chris Henning of Cooper was featured in Wallaces Farmer: Conservation farming: A tale of 3 farms

Matt Russell of Lacona was featured on the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition's blog : Congressional Hearings Examine Climate Change and Agriculture
Have you been featured in the media? Tell us when and where to find a link to the article, and we'll feature you in a future issue of Practical News.