Cued for conservation

Published 3:39 pm Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Wayne and Cindy DeWall were named Mower County’s outstanding conservationists for 2012. -- Photo provided

SWCD presents good-practices award to farm family

Wayne and Cindy DeWall have worked to build sustainable practices on their farm, and those efforts are getting recognized this year. The Mower County Soil and Water Conservation District named the DeWalls as Mower County’s 2012 outstanding conservationists.

Wayne grew up farming with his dad in an area south of Grand Meadow and took over the farm after his dad retired. Wayne and Cindy have lived on the farm for the last 24 years. The DeWall family has been in the area since the early 1950s, when his grandfather moved to Minnesota.

The DeWalls run a corn/soybean operation, using crop rotation and insect resistant varieties. Over the years, they incorporated several conservation practices into their operation, while installing proper erosion control methods at the same time. These include grass waterways, rock chute structures, a farmstead windbreak, stalk nitrate testing and grid soil sampling to improve nutrient efficiency.

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Many of these practices have been completed with assistance from the Mower SWCD & NRCS offices.

Two years ago, Wayne was approached by the Department of Ag to be involved with a cooperative study that would be done on the edge of his field. This study will measure water, sediment and other nutrients to better understand a watershed’s tendencies. Research is being done in cooperation with the Root River Field to Stream Partnership.

The DeWalls will be honored at the Minnesota Association of Conservation Districts annual convention in December.