The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

May 4, 2013

Wheat tour to provide crop information

By Roger Don Gribble
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Oklahoma Agriculture Experiment Station and Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service are inviting the public to attend the 2013 Lahoma Wheat Tour on Friday.

The tour will be held on the North Central Oklahoma Research Station located just west of Lahoma on U.S. 412.

The program has changed just slightly due to our honored guest, Oklahoma 3rd Congressional District Rep. Frank D. Lucas. Lucas will open the tour with comments beginning at 9 a.m. With Lucas on hand, registration for the tour will begin at 8:40 a.m., and coffee and doughnuts will be available compliments of Oklahoma Wheat Growers Association.

Our trailers will roll out of the station at 9:25 a.m. to our first tour stops beginning at 9:30 a.m. The tour will be menu driven as in the past, with participants being able to pick from five presentations during each stop.

This year, there will be a diverse menu of presentations to choose from. We will have our traditional wheat production stops like varieties and fertility, but will include much more economic and environmental discussions.

Addressing the new wheat varieties available for producers will be Jeff Edwards, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service small grains specialist. He will look at new wheat varieties that will be options for producers as they prepare to sow wheat in the fall of 2013.

Along that same line of variety discussions, Brett Carver and Bob Hunger will discuss the “Next Generation of Wheat Varieties” that will be used in the coming years in Oklahoma. Carver is the wheat breeder for Oklahoma State University, and Hunger is OCES wheat disease specialist.

There will be a good discussion of soil fertility with Brian Arnall and Hailin Zhang. Arnall will be visiting with participants about nitrogen use efficiency in wheat production, and Zhang will look at chloride and sulfur in Oklahoma soils and their use in what production.

From the economic point of view, Kim Anderson, OCES grain marketing specialist, will discuss some of the squeeze play that wheat is having from the corn side of things. Rodney Jones, OCES northwest area farm management specialist, will take a look at the current discussion of the new farm bill that is being written and its impact on Oklahoma wheat production. J.C. Hobbs. OCES tax management specialist, will review the tax law changes facing agriculture operations in 2013 and beyond.

Josh Bushong, OCES canola specialist, will review canola production in northwest Oklahoma and how the crop has fared during the adverse weather conditions experienced during the 2012-13 crop production year. Darren Redfearn, OCES forage specialist, will lead a discussion of the introduced forage grasses used in northwest Oklahoma and make some suggestions on how they should be managed this year after the last three years of drought.

One of the new features of the Oklahoma Mesonet stations producers can use to make crop rotation decisions might be the “Plant Available Water” site. This site was put together by Tyson Ochsner, OSU soil physicist. Ochsner will help producers find the site and instruct them on how to utilize it for management decisions on their farm.

Another new topic of discussion among producers in northwest Oklahoma is the use of cover crops to help improve the soil. Jason Warren and his graduate student, Kevin Meeks, will describe their research project and what they hope to gain from this kind of work for Oklahoma.

With the recent oil field activity across northwest Oklahoma, the movement toward utilization of byproducts from that activity has lead producers to look at the application of drilling fluids to their land. This year’s tour will have two stops dedicated to helping producers to examine how to use drilling fluids and how to come to an agreement between the applicators and the land owners. Chad Penn and his graduate student, Andrew Whitaker, will discuss their research findings into land-applied drilling fluids and allow you to look at their research plots with drilling fluids. Along the same lines, Shannon Ferrell, OCES professor of ag law, will describe how to best work with drilling fluid applicators to protect the land and accomplish the desired outcomes.

The tour will conclude at noon when Farm Credit of Enid will provide participants with lunch and a chance to further discuss all the research and demonstrations activates at the station.

We would like to have an idea of how many participants will be attending and hope you can let us know that you will be attending the tour. Call (580) 237-7677, the OCES northwest area office, to let us know you are planning to attend Tuesday.

Gribble is Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service northwest area agronomist.