The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

'Farming Evolution' Feb. 16-17


January 12, 2022 | View PDF

Get out your calendars and mark Wednesday & Thursday, February 16 and 17 as the dates for the annual Farming Evolution event.

Whether you look at regenerative agriculture concepts with a wary eye or fully embrace the ideas, this event is for you.

This year’s program is packed with farmer/rancher presenters – people with boots on the ground, families to provide for, and bank notes to service. Do you have hard & pointed questions, doubts, and fears? Are you looking for the next new idea? Or do you just want to spend time with other producers? You are invited to come spend a day or two with us.

The Farming Evolution will be at the Phillips County Event Center just north of Holyoke, CO, for an information packed two days. Registration is just $30 for one day and $40 for both days. After February 4, one day registration will be $40 and $50 for two days.

If you register for Wednesday and want to come for the second day, just pay the $10 difference. Whether paying by credit card or by check, please register online at To pay by check, simply indicate so at the bottom of the registration form and follow the mailing instructions.

The Program

Everything starts with the soil. Is there really a positive difference in how farmed and non-farmed soils behave? See for yourself. Candy Thomas will open the discussion with several demonstrations including tests you can easily do in your fields.

It's not easy to change how you do things. Our farmer speakers will share what made them decide to stop doing what came easily and venture into the unknown. What were the challenges? What failures did they face? What changes did they see early on to inspire them to continue to operate differently?

Brice Custer hails from near Hays, KS, where he, his wife and two young boys operate Custer Farms LLC. He first tried out cover crops in 2008 and has transitioned all 3,400 acres to a rotation with cover crops and minimal wheat. Come hear Brice's insights into "How to Not Lose Your Keester Farming".

A familiar name in the world of soil testing is Ward Laboratory. Ray Ward is to help production agriculture use its resources as efficiently as possible. He will help answer the questions “What Soil Health Tests Do I Need” and “What Do Those Numbers Tell Me?”

Growing multi-species forage crops under irrigation has provided a much-needed feed source for Caputa, South Dakota producer Shawn Freeland. Always asking himself 'how can I improve my soil' has taken him on a journey of decreasing inputs and increasing yields. Shawn will share how he has put “Farming, Livestock and Profitable” in the same sentence.

Nick Vos was born in South Africa where he grew up on a vegetable farm. As a proud American Citizen, Nick, his wife and 2 daughters reside outside Hugoton, Kan. This First-Generation American Farmer is growing corn, soybeans, wheat, sorghum, and companion crops.

In his engaging, unique style, Nick will share his successes and struggles making No-Till and cover crops work in an area that became famous as “The Dust Bowl".

Raising 13 marketable crops, diversification is abundant on the Roy Pfaltzgraff farm. Located south of Haxtun, CO, the 2,000-acre dryland farm doesn’t look much like the simple No-Till system of the 1980's. Roy feels one of the greatest benefits is the farm produces average yields in drought years with no loss in quality. It can also handle the frequent extreme weather events. Roy will share how he and his wife, Barb, “Market Non-Traditional Crops.”

Jay Young and his family raise corn, wheat, milo, a mixture of covers, oats and beardless triticale near Tribune, KS. Thanks to adding cover and companion crops in 2016, he has started living his dream of raising cattle in an area with limited grassland. A bonus benefit: the water intake rate on his irrigated fields has improved dramatically. Jay will share his journey with “Cover Crops, Grazing and Compost”.

As always at Farming Evolution, there will be a speaker panel session for more in depth questions and discussion. Exhibitors/vendors will also be in the same room as the presentation. They will have 60 seconds at the beginning of the program to speak to the audience.

New this year: bring your smartphones if you have one. You can submit a question during the presentations and participate in fun and informative activities. (Don’t worry if you aren’t smartphone savvy, we’ll help you and have paper options available.)

Supported and Sponsored by: Centennial, Haxtun, Morgan, Sedgwick, West Greeley & Yuma County Conservation Districts, Upper Republican Natural Resource District, Colo. State Conservation Board, Colo. Association of Cons Districts, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Arrow Seed, and Green Cover Seed.


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