Interactive Track – The Soil/Water Equation: Understanding the Basics and Educating Your Customers

Thursday, January 4, 2018
Pt. 1: 8:00 – 10:00 am
Pt. 2: 1:30 – 2:30PM
Pt. 3: 2:30 – 3:30 PM

This track is all about soils, water and irrigation –  and is directed at green industry professionals interacting with property owners.

Part I.  Understanding Soils (8:00 AM – 10:00 AM)

Dan Wheeler, University of Minnesota, Department of Soil, Water and Climate, will provide information on soils and the soil/water relationship. Through a combination of interactive stations and discussion, attendees will learn that accurate and quick determination of the soil particle size, soil color and soil structure all play important roles in the success of growing just about any vegetation on a site. Attendees will get their hands dirty by investigating these important soil properties, as well as discuss other soil interpretations that can be made from their proper analysis.

Part II. Understanding Irrigation (1:30 PM – 2:30 PM)

The afternoon will provide opportunity for more hands-on learning. Attendees will assemble sprinkler heads, and learn about trends in irrigation equipment and technology, including smart controllers and rain sensors.

Part III. How to Educate Your Customers and Homeowners (2:30 PM – 3:30 PM)

Sam Bauer, Extension Educator in Turfgrass Science, University of Minnesota, will discuss how to educate your customers about water, and the best way to answer questions about important soil/water/irrigation topics including: Water Conservation – How to Reduce Water Use; The Soil/Water Relationship; Using SMART Irrigation Controllers; and Rain Sensors, soil moisture sensors, and weather stations

Bauer will also share information on irrigation research that is currently taking place at the University of Minnesota.