Arkansas Soil and Water/Irrigation Expo features farmer presentations

It's one thing when soil scientists tell growers conservation practices can be beneficial on their farms, and it's quite another when successful farmers in Arkansas describe how they're making those practices work for their operations.

That was the case at the Arkansas Soil and Water Education Conference and Arkansas Irrigation Expo at the Arkansas State University Convocation Center in Jonesboro, Ark. Sponsors included ASU, the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, the Arkansas Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts and the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service.

The conference program included several Ph.D.s, including Dr. Joe Massey, who outlined how the USDA Agricultural Research Service's Delta Water Management Research Unit at Arkansas State is working to help producers with irrigation issues.

Speakers such as Ed Swaim of the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission and Charolette Bowie of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service discussed the Arkansas Water Plan and the NRCS Irrigation Water Management Plan.

And the conference had an international flair with Menaheim Hesse, minister for agriculture and science affairs with the Embassy of Israel in Washington speaking on Israel's Water Solutions -- Grow More with Less.

But the majority of presentations were by farmers, including:

Robby Bevis, Lonoke County, Getting started with cover crops.

Johnny Hunter, Stoddard County, Mo., Furrow irrigation in no-tillage and cover crop systems.

Mike and Michael Taylor, Phillips County, Integrating livestock production in row crop agriculture.

Greg Simpson, Mississippi County crop advisory, Innovations in Mid-South rice irrigation.

Nolan Evans, Poinsett County, Computerized hole selection for Poly-Pipe.

Bret Palmer, Clay County, Surge valves and furrow irrigation.

Jeff Lammers, Mississippi County, Irrigation scheduling with ET gauges.

For more information on the conference, visit





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