Kensington North Watersheds Association

Highlights from Farmers Meeting

(2019-04-02) Presentations by guest speakers and Kensington North staff covered a wide variety of topics at the farmers meeting held in Kensington last week.

Quick links to topics: Forestry Initiatives, Hazardous Waste, Living Labs, Nitrogen Considerations, Precision Agriculture, Soil Compaction and Subsoiling were discussed.

  1. Forestry Initiatives
  2. Johanna Kelly presented information on programs available for woodlot owners on PEI. The Forest Enhancement Program provides assistance for a wide range of forest management services, such as planting and thinning. The Carbon Capture Tree Planting Program is a pilot reforestation program aimed at high sloped lands and sensitive areas. KNWSA staff will assist owners of woodlots in accessing and completing applications for the various programs.

    A PDF version of Johanna's presentation can found here. Contact Johanna if you have questions regarding her presentation. Email: jkelly.knwsa@gmail.com

    The Forest Technician in our area is Stephen DeWolfe. Phone: 902.393.9396
    Email: sadewolfe@gov.pe.ca.

  3. Living Labs
  4. Andrea McKenna gave an introduction to the East Prince Agri-Environmental Association and to the Living Labs project. The "Living Labs" research project will develop eight Best Management Practices (BMPs) along with five supporting activities to address the following critical agri-environmental issues as identified by our farmers and project partners:

    Farmers will be contacted to enlist their support for field trials, once the research project has received approval from the Government of Canada, some time this spring. Kensington North is a partner in this project.

    Click here to view a PDF version of Andrea's presentation.

  5. Hazardous Waste on the Farm
  6. KNWSA staff member Heather Harris gave an overview of her project on hazardous waste. The CleanFarms program was reviewed, and the importance of providing a plot plan of farmyards showing locations of fuel storage, hazardous material, etc. to the Fire Department was discussed.

    To view a PDF version of Heather's presentation, click here.

  7. Precision Agriculture
  8. Evan MacDonald, Soil and Water Conservation Specialist, Dept. of Ag & Fisheries, gave a presentation on using GPS technology and satellite imagery for a wide range of field applications. Drones can be used to predict yields, assess the need for inputs (i.e. nutrients), assess the presence of disease, determine variable seeding rates, and more. Yield monitors and drone imagery have documented reduced yields in areas of high erosion. Coordinates for buffer zones and high sloped land can be downloaded from a website provided by the department to be installed on precision ag machinery.

    Agricultural weather stations on PEI will be integrated in one network on the WeatherCloud platform this summer. KNWSA is working to have the Baltic weather station included in the network.

    For a PDF version of Evan's presentation, click here.

  9. Nitrogen Considerations
  10. Kyra Stiles, Agri-Environmental Development Coordinator, Dept. of Agriculture & Fisheries, began her presentation with an overview of the Nitrogen Cycle, and led into the Soil Nitrogen Supply (SNS) Test that is being piloted on PEI this summer.

    Kyra is looking for farmers to participate in the PEI Soil Health Test pilot project which will include the Soil Nitrogen Supply test in the testing package. This project is intended to evaluate the new PEI Soil Health Test package delivery process at a small scale before it is opened up to all growers. Contact Kyra if you are interested in participating in the pilot project.

    This pilot project compliments the Nitrate and Soil Health work that has taken place in the KNWSA area. KNWSA staff will be able to assist local producers with the sampling, processing and delivering samples to the Lab. Appreciation for participation is demonstrated in the form of no cost for these Soil Health Test results.

    To see a PDF version of Kyra's presentation, click here. To contact Kyra with questions on the SNS test or other nitrogen related issues, you can email her at kstiles@gov.pe.ca or contact Johanna or Barry for more information.

  11. Soil Compaction, Drop Hammer Penetrometer
  12. Matt Ramsay, KNWSA's Agricultural Advisor, gave a summary of our Canada Agricultural Partnership (CAP) project. The project produced a PowerPoint presentation and fact sheet on our work to interpret the readings from a drop hammer penetrometer in lbs/sq. in. in order to make the information usable for interpreting soil compaction.

    A PDF version of our soil compaction slide show can be seen here. A copy of the fact sheet can be found here. To receive a hard copy of the fact sheet, contact Johanna or Barry.

    Steven Van der Veen won the door prize of a drop hammer penetrometer. John Ramsay won a round pointed shovel, which was featured as a means of checking soil compaction and the results of subsoiling activity.

  13. Soil Compaction, Penetrometers, Subsoiling
  14. Vernon Rodd, Soil Specialist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, gave a presentation and led a discussion on soil compaction issues. The timeliness of taking soil compaction readings and doing subsoiling was stressed. Vernon assisted KNWSA with our penetrometer project, creating a formula to interpret drop hammer penetrometer readings.

    Click here to see a PDF version of Vernon's presentation.


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