Tuesday, November 14, 2006

On-Farm Research Development from the OSU Extension Agronomic Crops Team.

Harold Watters, Ohio State Univ. Extension, 24600 Storms Rd, Raymond, OH 43067-9740, Gregory LaBarge, 8770 State Rd. 108, Suite A, Suite A, Wauseon, OH 43567-8607, United States of America, Edwin Lentz, Ohio State Univ Extension, 820 Country Creek Dr., Findlay, OH 45840-0702, Peter Thomison, Ohio State Univ, Hort.& Crop Sci. Dept., 2021 Coffey Rd., Columbus, OH 43210-4068, and Robert Mullen, Ohio State Univ, Wooster, OH 44691.

Meeting clientele needs through on-farm research projects has been an important relationship between clientele and The Ohio State University Extension Agronomic Crops Team. During focus group input from clientele in 2003, on-farm research in regional areas was identified as an important contribution that could be provided.  The closer to the farm that research can be conducted the greater the confidence that clientele have in the results. An annual summary of on-farm agronomic crops research has been produced for ten years in either printed form as an Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center Circular or as a web publication. Currently we post the yearly results of our peer-evaluated reports on the team website: http://agcrops.osu.edu. Development of potential on-farm trials comes from discussion of research needs at team meetings, from discussions with state specialists, from discussion with local producers and commodity group leaders. County Extension Agents choose projects that best fit local needs, coordinate projects with cooperators, collect appropriate data and prepare a final report for the project. Some projects are repeated across several counties in different parts of the state. Prepared reports are peer reviewed by two peers generally two state specialist but in some cases a state specialist and another agent. Reviews assure that adequate statistical analyses are conducted and sound objectives are described. The completed report is then posted on-line once the review process is complete. The value of the on-farm trials is three-fold. Agents gain experience with current issues, local producers get access to research results and team members have credibility when discussing practices with consultants, industry and producers. In addition the projects help meet local research needs and build a larger base of research results on given topics over a wider range of soil types and climatic conditions.

Handout (.ppt format, 344.0 kb)