What a slew of winter weather! On the bright side, all those winter small grains are nestled cozily beneath all this snow we've been getting.

I am still looking for about 3 more growers to participate in the Oatly pilot program which guarantees an oat market for three years paired with $25/ac cost share for the following cover crop. Check out more details below and let me know at if you're interested in participating.

Market & Cost Share Opportunity for Oat Growers Near St. Ansgar, IA
The oat milk company Oatly, Grain Millers and Practical Farmers are launching a new program to source US grown oats in 2019 from farmers using cover crops and extended rotation best practices. Participating farmers would receive forward contracts on their oats and cost share through PFI at $25/acre. Farmers are required to frost seed a clover or other legume cover crop into their oats or apply for a livestock exception to plant a diverse summer mix if livestock will graze the field. Oats must be produced conventionally and first-time oat growers are preferred.

For more information about the program check out this informational sheet and if you're interested in participating contact or to talk through program requirements and eligibility.
Mar 1 Call on Estimating Nitrogen from a Legume Cover Crop or Mix Going to Corn
On March 1, we'll have two cost share farmers on the line to discuss their cover crop planted in 2017 and how they accounted for the nitrogen it generated in order to reduce their nitrogen application to corn in 2018. Jeremy Gustafson who farms near Boone, IA and Daryl DeGroot who farms near Hull, IA will share their experiences with cover crop mixes and a straight underseeding of alfalfa or clover and how they accounted for the nitrogen it produced in order to reduce N applications to their 2018 corn.

This call will be held from noon to 1 pm on Friday March 1. To join dial 641-715-3620 and enter passcode 357330# when prompted.
Blog Online from Call on Effectively Using Variety Trial Information to Select Oats
Variety trial data can be difficult to parse into a decision on what oat to plant this year. To guide us through the process Melanie Caffe-Treml is an assistant professor and oat breeder at South Dakota State University spoke on our February call about how to interpret variety trial results to select a top-performing variety in your area and how to parse the 2018 results in a historically bad year for small grains.

You can read the entire blog on our website. Our discussion on this call was particularly broad covering a lot of topics so you might also want to check out the call notes.
February 18, 2019 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. | 1101 First St SE, New Prague, MN

February 18, 2019 12 - 4 p.m. | 1926 Collegeview Road SE, Rochester, MN

February 20, 2019 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. | 305 5th Ave S, Cold Spring, MN

February 20, 2019 1 - 4 p.m. | 18 S. Vine St, Mora, MN

February 21, 2019 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. | 4H Building, 3048 S Broadway Ave., Slayton, MN

February 22, 2019 | 300 14th St. S, Benson, MN

February 21-23, 2019 | La Crosse Center, 300 Harborview Plaza, La Crosse, WI

PFI Shared Learning Call: Estimating N to Corn from a Legume Cover Crop
March 1, 2019 Noon - 1 p.m. | 641-715-3620, passcode 357330#

Muscatine SWCD: Cover Crop Conference
March 1, 2019 9 am - 3 pm | Durant Community Center, Durant, IA
Grain Drill Calibration
Getting stir crazy in the house, but still too cold to be out in the field? It's the perfect time to get in the shop and calibrate your grain drill for planting spring small grains. Here are some resources:
There's still time to secure contracts for your next year's small grains. This requires a bit of leg work since many buyers don't list their bid prices online. Here are some resources we've produced to help navigate the process of scoping out markets for your small grains:
Looking for more? Contact us today!
Alisha Bower
Strategic Initiatives Manager
(515) 232-5661
Sarah Carlson
Strategic Initiatives Director
(515) 232-5661