Published Dec 6, 2017

2017 Cooperators’ Program: What you should know

By Steve Carlson

As farmers wrap up their season and plan for next, PFI’s farmer-cooperators have an additional responsibility: submit the data they collected from this year’s research trials and plan next year’s projects.

The first week in December marks the annual two-day Cooperators’ Meeting where farmer members meet to discuss these research results with each other and plan on-farm projects for the following year. In preparation for this meeting, staff members in Practical Farmers office are busy collecting this data, analyzing it and publishing the findings in detailed research reports for sharing far and wide.

In 2017, 51 farmer-cooperators participated in 71 projects that concluded or are still on-going.

2017 On-Farm Research Project Locations:

2017 Cooperators Program Map

Since 1987, more than 230 different farmers have conducted 1,359 research trials on their farms. Results from this research are shared through research reports; the Practical Farmer, our quarterly newsletter; in various agriculture magazines, at field days and workshops; at our annual conference; and at our annual cooperators’ meeting. Knowledge from these research projects has influenced both farmers and university researchers to adjust their designs to better fit farmers’ needs – and even been the foundation for ground-truthing hypotheses that ultimately led to university research projects.

2017 Field Crops Projects

Chris Teachout

  • Winter Cereal Rye Cover Crop Effect on Cash Crop Yields, Year 9 Update
  • Hybrid Rye Variety Trial
  • Tea Bag Soil Decomposition Index: Cover vs. No-cover
  • Interseeding Covers into Seed Corn at V3-6 stage
  • Corn Leaf Orientation for Interseeding Covers at V5
  • N Fertilizer Strategies for Corn Following Cover Crop
  • Rolling Cover Crops and Soybean Row-Width
  • Soybean Row-Width and Rolled Cover Crop Mulch
  • Roll-Crimping Cover Crops and Soybean Planting Date
  • Spring-seeded Brassica Cover Crops
  • Spring-Seeded Oat Cover Crop
  • Spring-Seeded Cover Crop Mixes
  • Underseeded vs. Mid-summer-seeded Green Manures for Corn
  • Planter Settings for Organic Corn

2017 Livestock Projects

  • Grazing Cover Crops
  • Beef Carcass Quality
  • Pelleted Small Grains
  • Feeding Hybrid Rye
  • Apple Cider Vinegar and Dairy Cattle
  • Bird Monitoring in Rotationally Grazed Pastures
  • Forage-Fed Pigs
  • Winter Feed Monitoring on a Grass-Fed Cattle Farm

2017 Horticulture Projects

Carmen Black and the Sundog farm crew

  • High Tunnel Tomato Variety Trial
  • Long Purple Carrots
  • Summer Lettuce Variety Trial
  • Cherry/Salad Tomato Enterprise Budgets
  • Sheep Grazing Cover Crop Before Fall Brassica
  • Mulch Trial in Strawberries
  • Annual Flower Mix Strips
  • Summer Broccoli Variety Trial, 2013-2017

Click here to learn more about the Cooperators’ Program