By Don Niles, board president
Greetings, it is with satisfaction that we can all look back on another successful year. After throwing some curveballs recently, Mother Nature once again provided nice conditions for cows, crops and innovative conservation practices in 2021.
As we move on from Thanksgiving and deer hunting, we have an opportunity to look back at what went well, what we can be improved and improve is repetitive. what can be improved and what we can change for future practices. To help with this type of innovative planning, PPF has offered – and continues to offer – ideas for new ways to approach our farms. For some of us, that might mean attending monthly Conservation Conversations that PPF hosts throughout the growing months. These have been very popular, as they offer a quick chance to get together, see a practice that is being demonstrated and talk to the farmer who did the actual work. We certainly plan to continue these conversations going forward. Other members prefer attending the PPF annual meeting for its variety of topics, larger group setting and a producer panel all in one stop. Our next annual meeting will be Feb. 15 at the Kewaunee Co Fairgrounds. The event will once again prove thought-provoking.
Along with our own programs, PPF has also partnered with Houston Engineering, based in Minnesota. They are helping us with a project to score the different stewardship practices we are adopting to more accurately measure the overall impact of our sustainability efforts on the peninsula. We can then more accurately measure the overall impact our sustainability efforts are having on the peninsula. This is a major undertaking with a commitment of both time and funding from PPF members that are participating. Once again, The Nature Conservancy has been instrumental in helping with both funding and encouragement of these efforts.
This summer and fall we have also supported the Kewaunee County Land and Water Department in a large-scale well testing project. This involved testing several hundred wells in summer, followed by a second set of different wells this November. The November results are not back yet, but there were a couple of key takeaways from the first round. In the summer testing, we found that the percentage of private wells that test positive for coliform is right around the state average. We also found that several of the coliform-positive wells can be fixed by simply replacing the old well cap with a new sealed well cap.
I hope you find value in the topics we provide our members. Please always feel welcome to share with any of the PPF board of directors your thoughts as to what you would like to see more of and any new areas we have not yet addressed. Thanks, as always, for your support, and , and we look forward to a successful 2022! -Don