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Bioreactor Installation field day set for September 14th near Hillsdale, IL

(MILAN, Ill)  Edge of field practices, like bioreactors, are one key way landowners can reduce nitrate loss from agricultural land. Rock Island County Soil & Water Conservation District, in partnership with University of Illinois Extension, will host a bioreactor installation field day demonstration and program on Tuesday, September 14th from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm at Drew Hohenboken’s farm in rural Hillsdale. The event is free and open to the public and includes a complimentary boxed lunch to go.

Subsurface agricultural drainage can allow large gains in productivity, however there are concerns about the amount of pollutants and nutrients moving and exiting from these systems, including nitrates. The water quality of our local streams and rivers can be negatively impacted by nitrate in tile drainage. Woodchip bioreactors remove nitrate from subsurface (i.e., tile) drainage water without significantly impacting production ground or crop yield.

Field day attendees will have the opportunity to see a portion of the bioreactor being installed on-site during the visit. Dr. Bryan Maxwell from University of Illinois will discuss the basics of woodchip bioreactors, Joe Gates from Rock Island County SWCD will present cost-share programs and opportunities, and Reid Christianson from University of Illinois and Rachel Curry from Illinois Extension will discuss the Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy.  All presenters and staff will be available for questions and input.

The field day will be held at Drew Hohenboken’s farm at 10414 317th Street N., Hillsdale, IL. The site will be marked with a field day sign. The event is free and open to the public, but reservations are suggested to ensure adequate space and food. To RSVP, contact Joey Deloian at 309-581-3002 or or call Rock Island Soil and Water Conservation District office at (309) 762-1486 Ext 3.

To learn more about bioreactors check out a recent news release from University of Illinois titled, “How the Humble Woodchip is Cleaning Water Worldwide”

This field day event is funded, in part, by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency through Section 604 of the Clean Water Act as part of the District’s education and outreach strategy for the Mill Creek Watershed Plan.

University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate, contact us at Early requests are strongly encouraged.