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Russell Ranch Field Day: Increasing Farm Resilience Through Healthy Soils & Water Management

As emphasis is increasingly being placed on decreasing water use and improving soil health in managing agroecosystems in the state of California, researchers at UC Davis have tackled projects looking at the crop and soil effects of subsurface drip irrigation targeted to the root zone.  At this year's Russell Ranch Field Day, participants will learn about the results of these studies that have evaluated crop roots, crop quality, and soil microbial communities in subsurface drip irrigation systems.  Jump on the hay wagons in the morning to see the plots where researchers measure soil, crop, and irrigation attributes of different cropping systems across Russell Ranch, and cool off in the barn as we discuss environmental, microbial, and long-term trends of tomato systems in northern California.  Don't miss our Grower Panel at 11:30 to learn more about the challenges and innovations taking place on California farms.

Monday, June 11

8:00am - 1:30pm

The event includes a tour of our Century Experiment and in-field presentations by researchers about their current research and findings, a farmer panel discussion, lunch, and a poster session/networking opportunity.

General registration is $10, students and farmers are free.

Email Barbara Mohondro at blmohondro@ucdavis.edu for a coupon code if you are a farmer or student. Continuing education credits may be available for CCA advisors for attending (to be determined).

Registration cost includes lunch.




8:00-8:20:  Registration

8:20-8:25  Welcome: Tom Tomich, Director of the Agricultural Sustainability Institute


FIELD TOUR (8:40 - 11:00)


STOP 1:  Farming Systems (10 min. each)

Long-Term Yield Trends in The Century Experiment after 24 Years   (Nicole Tautges)

Soil Health Assessment at Russell Ranch   (Kate Scow)

Considering Management and Landform on Micronutrient Availability   (Devin Rippner)



STOP 2:  Soil and Plant Health (10 min. each)

Impact of Subsurface Drip Irrigation on Soil Health (Deirdre Griffin)

Impact of Irrigation Management on Tomato Roots and Rhizosphere (Amelie Gaudin)

Kernza in California* (Kalyn Diederich and Mark Lundy)



STOP 3:  Irrigation and Soil Amendments   

Dairy Manure Effects on Soil Health Metrics*   (Daoyuan Wang and Jordan Sayre)

Deficit Irrigation Strategies to Optimize Processing Tomato Quality and Yield   (Meng Li)

Irrigation Management in Alfalfa*   (Daniele Zaccaria and Isaya Kisekka)




11:00-11:10  Environmental Impacts of California Tomato Production and Processing   

(Sonja Brodt)

11:10-11:20  Soil Microbial Changes with Different Crop Management Systems* (Eoin Brodie)

11:20-11:30  Soil Food Webs in Agricultural Soils* (Franz Bender)

* preliminary titles


GROWER PANEL  11:30-12:15 


LUNCH   12:15-1:15