Berning named Certified Crop Adviser of the Year

By Deborah Reinhart Brown - Ag update

Our own Tim Berning with Precision Agri-Services out of Minster was recognized as Certified Crop Adviser of the Year at the Conservation Tillage Conference last week! Congratulations, Tim!

There is one more chance to get your Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification Training completed in our area this year: Tomorrow, March 14, in Hardin County. This will be held from 9 a.m. to noon at the Plaza Inn in Mount Victory. Categories covered will include CORE, 1, 2, and 6. They will also be holding a two-hour FertCert training from 1 to 3 p.m. for those already holding at Pesticide License. To register, please call 419.674.2297.

Just a quick reminder of the Dairy Luncheon this Wednesday, March 15, at the Pizza Hut in New Bremen! 11:30 a.m. lunch with the program at noon: Dairy Nutritionist Dr. Bill Weiss will be the speaker. This will be our last session of the season; re-start next November.

(Almost) Last Call: Jeff Stachler and I are holding a three-hour Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training on Monday, March 20, at the Palazzo in Botkins. There are two sessions from which to choose: 2 to 5 p.m. or 6:15 to 9:15 p.m. There will be a light supper between.

This three-hour class is for those who have not yet participated in a FertCert training or who do “not” have a Pesticide License. If you apply commercial fertilizer – or manure with a guaranteed nutrient analysis – to 50 or more acres of cropland, you need to have this certification!! Yes, even if you hire the co-op to apply most of your fertilizer, but you side-dress your corn!! The only exception is that fertilizer put through the planter at the time of planting, or if you do not “sell” your crop – you feed it all to livestock on the farm.

So, why am I pushing this so hard?? Well, Sept. 30 of this year is when the enforcement begins. If you’re still farming and applying fertilizer on Oct. 1, you’re gonna need this card! And, at that point (according to our most recent info from ODA), you will need to take a test to get it. Yeah, that four-letter word: T-E-S-T!

Now, I’m guessing that we’ll have a few trainings sometime in the summer … but when or where I don’t know. If you’ve got time now, before planting and field work begins, I would suggest you seriously consider getting your certification sooner rather than later! Contact me to register for the event in Botkins.

And, a side-note: If you’ve already completed this training and have a Fertilizer Certification card, you do “not” need to attend. We will start the “Recertification” trainings next year …

Shelby County Cattlemen’s Meeting is next Tuesday, March 21, at Al’s Place, South Main Street, Fort Loramie, 7:30 p.m. There will be a presentation by Amgad Riad, DVM from Minton Veterinary Service (Chickasaw) on his experience as a bovine consultant and veterinarian who has treated cattle in various locations in the United States and across the globe. Free pizza, too!

Mercer County Extension will be holding a Forage Management program on Wednesday, March 29th, from 9a to noon. OSU Forage Specialist Marc Sulc and Extension Educator Jason Hartschuh will be presenting on how to measure forage quality, reduced lignin alfalfa, and using cover crops as a forage source. They will also discuss how timely harvests can impact forage quality.

This program will be held at the Ken-Feld Community Center on the Mercer County Fairgrounds, West Market Street in Celina. A light lunch will be provided to “registered” participants. Please register by March 24th to Denny Riethman at 419-586-2179 or

By Deborah Reinhart Brown

Ag update

The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at

The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at