Grant money to help teach farmers how to use onsite manure as fertilizer

Grant money to help teach farmers how to use onsite manure as fertilizer

HANCOCK COUNTY, OH (WTOL) - State gr ant money will be used to showcase a new way for local farmers to fertilize their fields.

This time of year, when cornstalks are becoming fully emerged, farmers will usually fertilize their crops with nitrogen rich fertilizer.

But a new system is being demonstrated for local farmers through the Ohio State University Extension office. Manure from the farms swine barn is pumped across the field and a special arm tool on a tractor incorporates the manure directly into the soil.

"The feed for the pigs came off of this field, the corn is fed to the animals, then the manure is returned, the nutrients is returned the the field. So, it's a closed loop system, and we really think that's a nice way to go," said Glen Arnold, a field specialist with the Ohio State University Hancock County Extension Office.

The demonstrations are funded through an Ohio Environmental Education Fund gr ant, to introduce farmers to this new method.

Not only will it save money, as they would no longer need to purchase fertilizer, but the process uses up manure that could run off into waterways and is incorporated into the dirt so rain won't wash it away.

"We can all do a better job. So, I think farmers are interested in this because it does work, both economically and timing wise. This is something they would have been with regular fertilizer. They don't have to buy that regular fertilizer, it'll also save them some money," said Arnold.

Glen said that the gr ant money is enough for the extension office to hold demonstrations like these for a year to a year and a half.

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