By John Lundvall, Iowa Learning Farms
Iowa Learning Farms (ILF) and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) are hosting a tour of a Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) wetland near Nashua in southeast Floyd County on Wednesday, Aug. 24, starting at 5:30 p.m.
The CREP wetland tour will be held in conjunction with the 2011 Iowa Drainage School at the Borlaug Learning Center on the Iowa State University Northeast Research and Demonstration Farm near Nashua. The tour will depart from and return to the Borlaug Learning Center. The tour is free and will include a complimentary evening meal. The public is invited to register for the tour (separate from the Iowa Drainage School). To register, please phone 515-294-5429, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tour participants are encouraged to bring their hiking boots or waders for an up-close look at the CREP wetland structure. Matt Lechtenberg and Shawn Richmond, CREP specialists with IDALS, and Iowa State University Extension water quality engineer Matt Helmers will lead the tour and talk about the benefits, installation and financial incentives for these structures.
There are 37 counties in north-central Iowa eligible for enrollment in CREP. Research at Iowa State University has demonstrated that strategically sited and designed wetlands can remove 40-90 percent of nitrates and over 70 percent of herbicides from cropland drainage waters. These areas are as beautiful as they are functional. Tour participants are welcome to bring their hiking boots or waders to see these structures up close.
The research farm is located at 3321 290th Street, Nashua; take exit 220 off Hwy 218 and travel 1.2 miles west on county road B-60 (280th Street). Go 1 mile south on Windfall Avenue, then 0.2 mile east on 290th Street. The Borlaug Learning Center and farm headquarters are located on the north side of the road.
John Lundvall is the Iowa Learning Farms field coordinator. He can be reached at 515-294-8912 or by emailing email@example.com.