Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Farmers and producers can gain a sharper edge and glean cutting-edge ideas from experts from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University during this year’s Farm Science Review.The FSR will again emphasize the best agricultural research, resources, information and access for farmers, said Chuck Gamble, who manages the show. Last year, the FSR offered 180 educational presentations and opportunities presented by Ohio State University Extension educators, specialists and faculty, as well as Purdue University educators.The event is all about learning new tips, techniques and information to help producers increase their farm operation’s bottom line, Gamble said.“As we encounter challenging economic times, it becomes even more important for farmers and producers to find the best information for their farm operations to remain solvent and to thrive,” he said. “We farmers have to operate as smart as we can in a challenging economy.“Attending Farm Science Review can help farmers align their farm operations with better, smarter decisions.”Following the theme, “Sharp ideas, sharp equipment and sharp results,” some of the issues participants can expect to learn more about include the agriculture economy, grain markets, land values and cash rents, Gamble said.“Because we’ve had a good planting season so far, it will likely lead to lower prices — that’s the challenge growers are facing right now,” he said. “Lower grain prices are causing farmers to seek ways to lower costs, improve efficiencies and to improve marketing.“OSU Extension agricultural economists will be talking about what farmers should expect and also looking at the impact of U.S. Department of Agriculture commodity programs and crop insurance.”The FSR will also offer information on water quality and how producers and growers can comply with new Ohio laws in that area, Gamble said.These issues are just a sampling of the topics participants can expect to learn about during the three-day farm trade show that annually draws more than 130,000 farmers, growers, producers and agricultural enthusiasts from across the U.S. and Canada.The FSR now in its 53rd year, is nationally known as Ohio’s premier agricultural event, Gamble said.Sponsored by CFAES, the Review features educational workshops, presentations, demonstrations and educational opportunities delivered by experts from OSU Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.Participants can peruse 4,000 product lines from 620 commercial exhibitors and capitalize on educational opportunities from Ohio State and Purdue specialists.Other Review highlights include:Plot demonstrations by members of the OSU Extension Agronomic Crops Team on corn, soybean, cover crops and bio-energy crops in plots established at the eastern edge of the Review exhibit area. The plots are just outside Gate C near the main entrance gate.Daily field demonstrations in the fields north of Interstate 70. “We should have very robust field demonstrations,” Gamble said. A comprehensive demonstration of an unmanned aerial system for real-time crop surveillance. Used as another tool in the farmer’s precision agriculture toolbox, the drones can be used to provide useful local site-specific data including crop scouting and geo-referencing. This allows growers to monitor pesticides dispersion and fertilizer usage and to monitor crop health parameters including soil moisture.“This year will be the most concerted effort we’ve had in terms of offering information on drones, as they are even more important for farmers now,” Gamble said. “The Ohio-Indiana UAS Complex and Test Center is assisting with obtaining the Certificates of Authorization (COA) to fly drones for the demonstrations.“We will have up to five companies that offer drone technology that will participate in the demonstrations. We will also transmit video from the drones on a large monitor for participants to view. That industry is ready to take off and we are aligned for the most robust demonstrations.”Gwynne Conservation Area.Called “the Gwynne” for short, the site’s 67 acres of prairie, woods and waters showcase a range of conservation practices year-round and, during the FSR, will host dozens of talks and exhibits on trees, ponds, wildlife and similar topics.Visiting the Gwynne and attending the talks is included with admission. Free shuttle wagon rides are available to and from the Gwynne.“The intent is that landowners interested in conservation practices can see them here ‘on the land’ and decide if they’re a good fit for their property,” said Kathy Smith, organizer of this year’s Gwynne activities during the Review and forestry program coordinator in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. The college is the FSR’s sponsor.Those practices include planting trees, managing ponds, managing wildlife, and simply getting to know the plants, birds, mammals and more that call Ohio home. Talks in the Gwynne, given by CFAES experts and others, will cover such topics as deer exclusion fences; tree identification; pond management, especially aerating the water and controlling aquatic vegetation; and the environmental impacts of shale oil and gas drilling. Find a complete list of topics, times and speakers at go.osu.edu/FSRgwynne2015.In the relative calm of the Gwynne, breezes blow through big bluestem prairie grass, bluebirds perch on nest boxes, bluegills dimple the surface of ponds, and Deer Creek burbles beneath tall trees.“As a forester, I’m happy to show people how planting small seedlings eventually leads to large trees,” Smith said. “This is demonstrated in many of our tree planting areas but especially in the hardwood and walnut plantings along Deer Creek.“Those are some of my favorite places on the property. Gotta love the shade!”In the big picture, Smith said, good conservation is a fit with good farming.“From a forestry perspective, for example, a healthy woodland can provide an income for the farm that can help promote other conservation practices,” she said. “Trees are an agricultural crop. They just have a longer rotation than corn and soybeans.”Question the authorities at the Farm Science ReviewWhether it’s questions about how this summer’s record flooding will impact grain prices or whether drones can be used legally to scout agriculture fields, the answers to these and more will be available from experts with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) at The Ohio State University during Farm Science Review.In fact, 53 presentations will be offered by experts from Ohio State University Extension, the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Ohio State’s College of Veterinary Medicine and Purdue University during the Review’s “Question the Authorities” question-and-answer sessions offered daily at the three-day agricultural trade show, said Stan Ernst, an OSU Extension specialist who will moderate the sessions.“Question the Authorities” offers participants the opportunity to ask a range of general or technical questions related to their farm enterprise and offers an easy way for producers to interact with Ohio State and Purdue experts, Ernst said.“The presentations focus on business, economic and policy concerns as well as current topics that impact agriculture,” he said. “The sessions are a way to get farmers, growers, producers and others a chance to hear directly from university experts on topics that have a financial impact.”The presentations are broken up into 20-minute sessions, which allows the speakers enough time to get their message across and answer questions from the audience and then move to the next topic, Ernst said.“A goal of the program is to try to plant ideas and get people to be thinking about the issues that are coming down the pike and how they can impact their operations,” he said. “We want to connect farmers and producers with university experts so that they can not only pick up some management tips that can help them on their farm but to also plant ideas that will have them dig some more as they make their management decisions.”Some of the other “Question the Authorities” topics will include:• Managing your farm in an economic downturn.• Grain outlook.• Current veterinary concerns.• Food prices.• Farm economy and policy.• Drones in agriculture: Know the law.• Farmland prices and rental rates.• Profitable pricing for farm products.• Poultry health. public concern?• Growing beer (hops and barley) in Ohio.• Estate planning.• Managing farm labor.• Is the farm balance sheet in trouble?• Farming the bottom line with drones.• Crop budgets.• Business succession planning.• Controlling spread of disease outbreaks.More information can be found at fsr.osu.edu.