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Making Your Soil Work for You!

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Date and Time



March 21st at Woodville Town Hall - 100A King Street, Woodville

March 22nd at Alderville Community Centre - 8913 hwy 45 Roseneath, Ontario

Event description



3.0 CEU credits available to Certified Crop Advisors at each event

Tickets $15 - hot lunch included



Mike is a third generation cattle rancher from Chatham Ontario. The family raises cattle to supply their on farm retail store and several speciality markets.Their cropland produces sweetcorn, seed corn and seed beans as well as a number of commercial cash crops. He has developed a practical and sustainable system of growing and grazing cover crops that allows him to raise beef cattle on some of the most valuable vegetable and cash crop land in Canada. He will cover some of his successes and failures over the last ten years of getting this system to work.


Paul Buckley (Woodville, March 21)

Paul farms in the City of Kawartha Lakes. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and Physical Geography with a certificate in geomatics from Nipissing University.

In addition to helping on the family’s large cash crop/custom sileage/custom farming operation, he has also begun his own farm business. He grows corn, wheat and soybeans and does custom sileage. Paul is using no till, cover crops, and reduced synthetic inputs to minimize soil erosion and improve the health of his soils through increased nutrient, water, and energy cycling on his farm. His presentation will focus on why he got interested in soil health, what he is trying to achieve on his farm, as well as what he has tried and what his experiences to date have taught him.

Adam Shea (Woodville, March 21)

Adam and his wife Marie run Shealand Farms near Bethany in the City of Kawartha Lakes. They are part of multi-generational, diversified family farm operations. They have a cow-calf beef and sheep operation, and he is involved with his father’s and uncle's cash crop operation. They have three girls and if one of them takes an interest in farming, he wants to pass the farm down to the next generation in a way that is sustainable.

Some of the practices on the farm for protecting soil include rotational grass-based pasturing systems, grazing cover crops, planting cover crops for forage production, incorporating manure back onto fields, fencing livestock out of streams and waterways, sound crop rotations, and minimum and no-till cropping. Less to do about soil health, but we also crop some hay acres under a delayed harvest scheme on rented ground that has nesting grassland birds such as bobolink on them.

Zac Cohoon (Woodville March 21, Alderville March 22)

Zac Cohoon, of Twin Erin Farms, is a second generation farmer in the Durham region area. He began his career in agriculture in 1992 working with his parents on the family farm. Since then, the farm business has transformed from a livestock intensive operation with hogs, feedlots, and broiler chickens, into a grain and oilseed production operation. Currently he is the chairman of the Durham Agriculture Advisory Council and on the executive of Durham Region Federation of Agriculture.

Zac was the winner of the 2017 Innovative Farmer of the Year award from the Innovative Farmers Association of Ontario.

Eric Bowman (Alderville, March 22)

Eric graduated from University of Guelph (OAC’73- Honours Animal Science) and came home to the family farm near Enniskillen in Durham Region. His dad was in the dairy industry and they worked together. In 1976, he and his wife took over the farm and milked cows until 2005. They then made the switch to organic beef farming. This led to increasing use of cover crops and a change in their farming practices. They also added a store to sell their freezer beef and provide local artisans and the honey, maple syrup and cider producers a place to sell their product.

Eric will be focusing on the use of cover crops to protect soil, support soil microbes and feed the cattle. The use of reduced tillage or no-till, tumble wheels for pasturing (mob grazing), cover crops and mushroom compost have helped them maintain/improve our soils. Their philosophy is to protect the soil that feeds them (above and below) and improve it for future generations. If you look after your soil, then it will look after you.

Dustin Mulock (Alderville, March 22)

Dustin Mulock, of Mulock Farms near Woodville, is a father of six with a Bachelor’s Degree in Ag Business from the University of Guelph. He is a second generation farmer. Dustin draws inspiration from his father, Carl Mulock, who has been leading his community towards alternative farming practices for decades. Their farm adopted no-till in the mid 80's, incorporated strip till in the early 2000s and shortly thereafter adopted Regenerative Ag with an emphasis on restoring soil health.

Dustin’s presentation will focus on how regenerative practices, a subset of sustainable agriculture, support the important role of soil biology. His presentation will include hos experience with multi-species and interseeded cover crops, companion planting, compost tea and cover crop grazing!


The Ontario Soil Network is a farmer-led network, learning from each other how to use cover crops, min-till and amendments to improve soil – in small groups over coffee or beers. The program piloted in Southwestern Ontario in 2017 as a leadership challenge for 30 farmers; now many are keen to try it (and funders keen to fund it) in Central and Eastern Ontario. Project Coordinator Melisa Luymes will review what Soil Network farmers were up to last year and facilitate a group discussion about what local farmers would like to see happen in East Central.

OMAFRA (Woodville March 21, Alderville, March 22)

Agrisuite: a demonstration will be provided by OMAFRA of this free downloadable software. Users can take soil test information plus other field specific information such as soil type, slope, tillage, previous legume N credits to come up with tailor made nutrient recommendations for their fields.

Agmaps: is a free web based GIS platform specifically made for Ontario farmers. OMAFRA will demonstrate how users can access Agmaps to zoom in on their own farm. Agmap users can see features such as specific soil type and texture, presence of tile drains, topography and how to calculate area (i.e. acreage) of their fields and how to measure distance using Agmaps.

Participants will have an option of bringing their own soil tests and laptops, so that they can take advantage of hands-on assistance from OMAFRA staff to get them going.

What to bring along (optional):

1.Your soil test information

2. Laptop computer/tablet (paper versions will also be provided)

We can provide a brief overview of how to use Agrisuite (nutrient budgeting software).

To save time prior to the workshop, feel free to download Agrisuite by going to the website:

In the search box on OMAFRA webpage, type in “Agrisuite”

Click on the 1st link (should be a page entitled “Ontario’s Agriculture Planning Tools Suite - Agrisuite”).

Click on heading entitled “How do I get Agrisuite”. First download Microsoft Silverlight, then download Agrisuite software.
Save download to your desktop.
Please note that the AgriSuite is not compatible with the Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge browsers.

Date and Time


March 21st at Woodville Town Hall - 100A King Street, Woodville

March 22nd at Alderville Community Centre - 8913 hwy 45 Roseneath, Ontario

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