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Reduced Tillage Project Sharing Research at Soil Health Field Days

Hear the latest Cornell Small Farms Program research on reduced and no-till practices for vegetables at Soil Health and Climate Resiliency Field Days this July. We’ll be sharing our research along with the NY Soil Health team and partners in a statewide event series running this summer.

On July 25, we’ll be at Cornell’s Thompson Vegetable Research Farm in Freeville, NY, for “Tools and Tactics for Soil and Weed Management in Vegetable Production.” Tarps have become a multifunctional tool for small-scale vegetable farms. They are fitting in between crops, often for a few weeks, to manage soils and weeds prior to planting. What are the long-term, or legacy, effects of this practice? We’ll tour our organic cropping systems trial where tarps have been used in no-till permanent beds over the last 8 years and compared to conventional tillage practices. We’ll share about changes in our crop yields, labor, and weeds and how we are monitoring the soil arthropod community to learn what’s happening in our soils.

On July 28, the “Reduced Tillage in Vegetable Crops Field Day” event will be in Johnstown, NY at B&B Crop Farm. We’ll be talking about cover cropping and strip tillage. How do we adapt these practices for organic management while avoiding some of the pitfalls: cover crop termination, weeds, residue management, and nitrogen availability? We’ll share research on strip tillage with winter hardy cover crops and discuss the management practices and tools to consider in trialing these practices on the farm, including ways to apply these methods on smaller acreage.

These field days are part of a statewide series this summer, visit Soil Health and Climate Resiliency Field Days for the full listing of events.


Farm Ops Offering Veteran Scholarships for Soil Health & Climate Resiliency Field Days

No matter if you are growing vegetables and field crops, grains, or fruit, somewhere in NYS there is a field day for you. The upcoming event series from the New York Soil Health team and partner organizations includes a number of separate events occurring across NYS. Our Farm Ops project wants to support farmer veterans desiring to attend one of these events. Learn more and apply.

Ryan Maher

Ryan began with the SFP in the summer of 2013 and focuses on research and extension in soil health practices for vegetables. He is a Baltimore native with family and educational ties to CNY. After graduating from SUNY-ESF in 2003 he spent two summers training on diversified vegetable farms, first in SW Oregon and then in the Boston metro area. In 2007, he graduated from Iowa State with an MS in Sustainable Agriculture focusing on soils in native grassland restorations. He spent five years with the USDA-ARS in St. Paul MN, coordinating research on nutrient cycling in perennial forage crops. Ryan, his wife Jackie, and daughters Gia and Olive are happy to settle in CNY and enjoy the food, farms, forested hills, and water of the Finger Lakes region.