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Public invited to tour county farms

| August 15, 2016
Brian Powell discusses the operation of the livestock mortality compost facility that he put into practice on his farm in 2007 with the help of Coshocton County Soil and Water Conservation District.

Brian Powell discusses the operation of the livestock mortality compost facility that he put into practice on his farm in 2007 with the help of Coshocton County Soil and Water Conservation District.

COSHOCTON – The Coshocton County Soil and Water Conservation District invited the public to tour county farms that have used the agency’s services to better their farm land. On Thursday, Aug. 11, a tour bus filled with county residents left the fairgrounds and headed to Summerfield Farms on SR 621 in Keene.

On the Summerfield Farm, owned by Endsley Farms LLC, the Soil and Water Conservation helped with a CRP, conservation reserve program, which allowed the farm to add 15 aces back into production and improve drainage.

“Without the Soil and Water’s help, this would not have been possible,” said Todd Endsley. “A lot of the services they provide, we never see a bill. I really appreciate what their office did for us.”

The next stop was Brian Powell’s farm on SR 36 in Fresno where they added a livestock mortality compost facility for hogs. Due to this facility, the farm has seen a 20 to 30 percent reduction in mass compared to burying the animals. Wood chips are added to the top of the compost to discourage the spread of disease and also to ward off critters.

The compost is kept at a constant temperature between 140 and 160 degrees which destroys any disease the animals may have had. It is then used to add organic matter to crops in the spring. It is clean, easy, and cost effective.

The next stop was Schumaker Farms for dinner. The final stop of the tour was WenMar Farms stream bank stabilization project on the Tuscarawas River. Landowners had to obtain permits from the US Army Corps of Engineers, Ohio EPA, and the Coshocton County Floodplain Management. Wendell and Greg Waters used concrete to stabilize approximately 1,000 feet to stream bank to keep it from further eroding into the farm field.

“Because of our affiliate members, local businesses and people, we were able to do this,” said Deb Bigelow, program administrator at Coshocton Soil and Water Conservation District. “That money is used solely for educational purposes and we wanted to show people the practices that we help put into place on local farms.”

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Category: Education

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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