Volume 14 Issue 7 July/August NE

Looking Forward to Husker Harvest Days

By Kris Polly

Husker Harvest Days is one of the nation’s biggest and most impressive agricultural trade shows, and it’s coming right up. This month, we speak with Matt Jungmann, the national events director for Farm Progress, about this must-see event and all it involves. Having attended in the past, I can say that it is a truly impressive show.

As a native of western Nebraska, I can attest that it is no place to grow pineapples in the winter. Yet farmers are doing just that with simple geothermal greenhouses manufactured by Greenhouse in the Snow. We speak with Allen Bright about the ingenious technology, designed by founder Russ Finch, and what can be grown with it. We also speak with Leigh Dodd, the executive vice president of the Greenhouse Company of South Carolina, about the company’s line of Jāderloon greenhouses, which are suited for customers ranging from commercial operations to hobbyists.

Next, we speak with Mike Britton of Oregon’s North Unit Irrigation District about its new pump station, fish screens, and other infrastructure upgrades.

We also talk with Josh Mosier, the North American general manager of Komet Irrigation, a global irrigation company known for its high-efficiency sprinklers and other products.

Then, we speak with Ward Neesen, the chief technology officer at Watertronics, about the new WaterVision 2.0 cloud telemetry system, which can automatically and remotely control pump and irrigation systems, help prepare reports, and adjust flow levels to optimize the output of irrigation devices.

Next, we talk to Alejandro Caballero, the director of engineering at Spanish engineering and consulting firm BIOAZUL, about the company’s work around the world to purify and reuse wastewater, especially for agricultural irrigation.

We also speak with President Mark Turpin and Business Development Manager Steve Macomber of Duperon about the company’s rakes and screens, which can help irrigation managers handle debris, storm surges, and waste in their systems.

Finally, we feature an interview with recently retired attorney Holly Franz of Montana about water law, water rights, and what it takes to make a career in the field.

In one sense, the business of irrigated agriculture is simple: putting water on plants. But as we all know, doing this efficiently, productively, and effectively takes hard work, ingenuity, and creativity. From geothermal greenhouses to telemetry systems to recycled wastewater, this month’s interviewees exemplify these qualities.

Kris Polly is the editor-in-chief of Irrigation Leader magazine and the president of Water Strategies LLC, a government relations firm he began in February 2009 for the purpose of representing and guiding water, power, and agricultural entities in their dealings with Congress, the Bureau of Reclamation, and other federal government agencies. He may be contacted at kris.polly@waterstrategies.com.