Drought Preparedness Class Packs the Room

The Yamhill Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) and Oregon State University (OSU) Extension Service organized a Drought Preparedness Workshop on November 3rd.  Irrigators from Yamhill, Marion and Polk counties gathered at the Chemeketa campus in McMinnville to hear about more effective methods for irrigation and how to use water more efficiently. Troy Peters, Washington State University Extension Irrigation Specialist, came down from Prosser, WA to speak about the science of irrigation and best practices for scheduling. He highlighted their Irrigation Scheduler Mobile which ties in real time weather data, crop coefficients and other variables to assist irrigators in making better scheduling decisions. Chad Higgins, the head of the Nexus of Energy, Water and Agriculture Laboratory at OSU, shared research he is conducting, field testing variable rate irrigation on center pivots.  Specifically, he is looking at how precise this technology can be and what challenges might exist in creating a precise irrigation prescription for fields. You can read more about this research here.

Jon Unger, Water Resource Department, Travis Godeaux, Natural Resources Conservation Service,  and Ulrike Mengelberg, Energy Trust, all discussed incentives, grants, and cost opportunities that exist for irrigation efficiency upgrades, water conservation and increasing water storage capacity.

The Yamhill SWCD and OSU would like to THANK the participants and speakers along with a special THANK YOU to sponsors, Crop Production Services and Ernst Irrigation.