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Ohio Master Farmers diligent conservationists

Two Ohio growers have been honored as Master Farmers for their commitment to conservation.

Jim Jepsen raises beef cattle, corn, soybeans, wheat, and hay south of Columbus. He says his more than 1,300 acres of mostly highly erodible land needs to be worked with, not against.

“They don’t make any more land,” he says. “What we have is what we will ever have. We don’t want to see it wash away. We don’t want to see it blow away. We just take care of it the best that we can.”

Fourth-generation farmer Kent Sonnenberg grows 1,700 acres of corn, soybeans, and wheat while milking 3,100 cows with his son. He says keeping phosphorus in the field is a core to the farm’s management as it edges the Western Lake Erie watershed.

“Working in the ground and putting manure on is an oxymoron and you just don’t do that because you’re storing something and you’re running it down the river,” he says. “Nobody wants that. Everybody wants to keep the phosphorus on the ground, utilize it as well as the nitrogen itself.”

The winners were nominated by their peers and selected based on management, innovation, conservation, leadership, and community involvement.

The awards are presented by the Ohio Farmer Magazine and sponsored by Brownfield Ag News and the Ohio Conservation Tillage & Technology Conference.

Read more on the winners.

Photo courtesy of Jennifer Kiel, Farm Progress.

  • Thanks Nicole. The Conservation Tillage & Technology is happy to host this annual Award. Congratulations to two deserving Master Farmers. They join a list of great Ohio farmers who earned the award in previous years.

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