NDSU Extension Intercalping Field Tour scheduled for July 27 | News, Sports, Jobs

The North Dakota State University Extension will host an on-farm field trip on July 27 in Pierce and Rolette counties highlighting local farmers’ experiences with intercropping.

The tour will begin at 2 p.m. at Lee Farms located at 5350 78th St. NE, Bisbee, and end at 5:30 p.m. three miles west of the intersection of Interstates 30 and 66 at 8557 51st Ave., Mylo.

“Intercropping is growing two crops together in the same field and harvesting them for grain at the same time,” said Audrey Kalil, a plant pathologist at the Williston Research Extension Center and one of the event’s co-hosts. “Farmers in North Dakota are exploring intercropping for its potential to help manage disease and reduce input costs.”

The tour will begin at Lee Farms, where grower Paul Overby has been intercropping since 2019. This year, Overby is planting field peas and canola together, one of the combinations many farmers start with when adopting intercropping.

Growing a pea-canola intercrop can help make pea harvesting easier, as the pea vines climb up the canola stalks and thus reduce pea lodging. This combination also has the advantage of being easy to separate due to the very different sizes of pea and rapeseed seeds.

Overby will also feature a field with cover crops intercropped with wheat, so the covers are already growing after the wheat is harvested, and a field planted with sunflowers and a mix of selected species to support pollinators.

The tour will end near Mylo, where Nathan Neameyer will discuss practices he has adopted on his farm to improve soil health, including intercropping soybeans and canola and planting green soybeans in rye. Neameyer will also explain how he separates seeds from intercrops after harvest.

Neameyer has five years of intercropping experience and has grown a variety of crop combinations including soybeans and flax, faba beans and flax, and soybeans and canola.

Attendees will see intercropping in action and can ask questions of current practitioners. The tour will also be a unique opportunity for attendees to discuss how they have adapted their equipment and operations to plant, manage, harvest and separate two crops simultaneously.

A dinner will be provided. Participants are asked to register online at www.ndsu.ag/intercropping to help plan the meal.

This field trip is made possible with support from the Rolette County Soil Conservation District and an Extension Risk Management Education Grant from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture of the United States Department of Agriculture.

For questions about the event, contact Anitha Chirumamilla, NDSU Extension Culture Systems Specialist at the Langdon Research Extension Center at 256-2582 or [email protected]

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