Reviewing samples under a microscopeCutting-Edge Research

Ongoing research and collaborations

Rock River Laboratory collaborates with industry leaders to perform and contribute to cutting-edge research to improve the industry and stay on the forefront of science. The projects contained here are either research that is finished and never meant for publication, or ongoing research that is not yet published. 

Strategies to include sorghum silage in lactating cow rations with Texas A&M's Department of Animal Science

The Texas A&M University System's Department of Animal Science, including Juan M. Piñeiro, DVM, MS, Ph.D., Douglas Duhatschek, DVM, Artur Grando Pilati, DVM have been researching strategies to improve fiber and starch digestibility within forage sorghum silage for dairy use in the Southern High Plains (Texas) region. Rock River Laboratory's research and development work contributes to shaping the story of the effect of a novel kernel processing, KP, technology, and ensiling time on sorghum silage processing and rumen in situ starch digestibility after seven hours of incubation. Learn more in the Texas Dairies Matter article, "Strategies to include sorghum silage in lactating cow rations. Part 3.".

Ongoing Potassium Research with Dr. Robert Miller, Colorado State University

Dr. Robert Miller has been investigating a better method for finding soil test potassium, a project he has titled KRX. Rock River Laboratory is one of many contributors to Dr. Miller's research project over the past eight years of it's duration, arranging test plot sites and assisting with harvest. 

Learn more about the KRX project and some of the findings thus far in this presentation from Dr. Robert Miller: Potassium Nutrition and Soil Testing Presentation

Soil research project with the University of Wisconsin-Madison Hancock Agricultural Research Station 

Rock River Laboratory is currently working with the Ruark Laboratory on a project investigating the efficacy of potato petiole nitrate analysis - a project designed in partnership with Hancock Agricultural Research Station. The Ruark team is testing plants from the Hancock Agricultural Research Station while Rock River Laboratory is providing the analysis for the project. 

Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial (WICST)

In 1989, Dr. Joshua Posner of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Agronomy developed a truly unique Long-term soil experiment (LTSE) aimed at evaluating all aspects of the agricultural system. The experimental design would look at not only the economics, but also the ecology of different cropping systems. The result was the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping Systems Trial (WICST). This study measures the economics and ecological impact of six cropping systems that are of particular importance to the Wisconsin agricultural industry. These systems are continuous corn (CS1), corn/soybean (CS2), corn/soybean/clover with winter wheat (CS3), corn/alfalfa/alfalfa/alfalfa (CS4), corn/oats with alfalfa seeding/alfalfa (CS5), and rotational grazing (CS6).

Rock River Laboratory has been a part of the WICST project since 2012, providing soil and forage analysis as part of this ongoing learning opportunity. Dustin Sawyer of the Rock River Laboratory team has also provided support of the program, focusing his Master's Degree work around the WICST trial. Learn more about WICST and his findings on this published poster:  Fertility Trends in 20 Years of Nutrient Drawdown and Best Management Practices at Wisconsin Cropped Systems Trial

Abstract linked here