Kubik Family Farm field day draws a crowd

Field day attendees gather around Angie Reick-Hinz, ISU Extension Agronomist, and the permanent pasture soil pit to look at rooting depth and soil health on July 6 at the rural Traer farm of Ray and JoEllen Kubik. –Photo courtesy of Lisa Kubik
Brian Dougherty, Field Agriculture Engineer for ISU Extension, gives one of several soil health demonstrations on July 6 comparing an alfalfa hay field, permanent pasture, short-term pasture, and a no-till soybean field. The first demo compared infiltration and surface erosion of each management system. The slake test and slump tests compared the structure and health of each soil. –Photo courtesy of Lisa Kubik
Alex Kubik digs one of three soil pits as part of the field day held on his family's rural Traer farm on July 6. Soil pits were dug in a no-till soybean field, an alfalfa hay field, and permanent pasture to look at the soil structure of each practice, rooting depth, potential compaction layers, and soil health. –Photo courtesy of Lisa Kubik
A sample from the permanent pasture soil pit is pictured. The soil structure is granular at the top which represents healthy soil. Farther down, wormholes are visible. Finding worms typically indicates lots of microbial life in the soil and helps to improve soil health. –Photo courtesy of Lisa Kubik

A field day focusing on soil health in grazing systems sponsored by Iowa State University Extension and Iowa Learning Farms was held on the rural Traer farm of Ray and JoEllen Kubik* on July 6. The Kubiks raise cattle with Alex and Lisa Kubik, and Jordan and Sierra Hagedon. The event drew close to 50 area farmers. A number of speakers addressed how to determine soil health as well as practices to improve and build on current soil health. The field day also focused on grazing systems which included conducting pasture evaluations to determine the quality of forages and how to better manage pastures for soil and livestock health.

*This article has been updated to reflect the correct location of the field day. The print version, which lists the farm of Alex and Lisa Kubik, is incorrect. The North Tama Telegraph regrets the error.