RICK'S AG ROUNDUP
It´s not that I have purposely been holding out on you this year! It´s just there have been a lot of other things to write about and selecting wheat varieties is a lot more complicated that it used to be.
It´s time to plant wheat. If you are wanting to graze it, it probably should already be in the ground.
Due to lack of space and time, I am just going to cut to the quick and tell you how our county plots did. In the plot south of Ellinwood, on Bryan Mosier´s land, we had a sandy soil with a low soil pH of around 5.0. Those things can make a difference. It was planted into old alfalfa ground and had plenty of fertilizer applied. The top variety was Armour, yielding 94.9 bushels per acre. Realize in plots that we correct all moisture to 13.5 percent so we get a little increase if the wheat is dry. Also, we benefit on the outside rows from leaving an extra space.
The other top wheats there were Tarkio, Spartan, Art, Sante Fe, Keota, Smoky Hill, Shocker, Post Rock and Wesley. This plot averaged 72 bushels per acre. It was planted in late September and was no-till dryland.
In the plot at Olmitz, Tim Frieb was our cooperator. It was planted late, in early November after a big soybean crop. It also was no-till dryland. But, it was on a 7.5 pH and a silt loam soil.
The top yielding variety was Infinity CL, a Clearfield variety. Call me if you don´t know what that means. It yielded 39.8 bushels per acre. Other top varieties in that plot were Overland, Art, Millennium, Fuller, Armour, Wesley, Shocker and spartan.
NATIONAL FARM SAFETY WEEK
If you travel on rural roads (almost all of them around here are), you may have had a close encounter with agricultural equipment.
As I wrote about last week, National Farm Safety Week is being observed September 20-26. This year´s theme is "Rural Roadway Safety: Alert, Aware, Alive."
One of the most hazardous industries in the United States is agriculture. Many injuries occur to farmers and ranchers each day. The general public becomes involved when roadway accidents occur. Everyone must share our roadways. So farm safety week is not just for farmers anymore. On the road, equipment moves at a slow rate of speed. In rural areas, a trait called patience needs to be observed so everyone can go home safely at the end of the day.
Encounters with agricultural equipment are becoming more common all the time and more of them are resulting in serious injury or death. Many drivers just aren´t familiar with the precautions they should know when traveling rural roads.
The gap between speeding vehicles and slow moving farm equipment can close quickly and lead to disaster, especially when a driver is distracted. Did you know distracted driving is the leading cause of all traffic crashes? Drivers who use a cell phone are four times more likely to be in a crash than other drivers. When on rural roads or any roads, make safe driving your first priority.
One point that I forgot to stress last week is directed for farmers. That is, being in compliance with the Slow Moving Vehicle (SMV) regulations can protect your liability.
I teach tractor and machinery safety, as well as general farm and rural safety to 14-15 year-olds each spring and thus have a vested interest in keeping our area a
safe place for those who live here.
FALL TREE SALES RUNNING OUT QUICKLY
Although springtime is the most popular time to plant conservation tree seedlings, fall offers a great opportunity to plant seedlings if the soil moisture is adequate. A fall planting allows plants to become well established before winter; therefore, when spring arrives, plants can begin growing early and take advantage of optimum growing conditions.
The Kansas Forest Service Conservation Tree Planting Program offers containerized tree seedlings for fall distribution. This program encourages landowners to plant trees and shrubs for conservation purposes.
Approved uses of these plants include: home, field and livestock windbreaks, woodlots, riparian plantings, wildlife habitat, Christmas trees and establishing other related conservation practices.
Organizations considering planting seedlings for educational benefits are also encouraged to order. Orders will be taken through the second Friday in October.
However, as I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, they often run out of some species by the end of September, so get them ordered.
This fall there is a good selection of different species being offered. As always, there will be a good supply of evergreens for sale to include eastern red cedar, Southwestern white pine, Austrian pine and Ponderosa pine. The Conservation Tree Planting Program has expanded the deciduous species available, but they are in limited supply. The deciduous species being offered this fall include redbud, black walnut, fragrant sumac, bur oak, English oak, pecan, sawtooth oak, lacebark elm and swamp white oak. Prices for the seedlings will be $50 for 25 seedlings, which is the minimum amount that can be ordered.
If a conservation tree planting is on your mind, or you just need to plant replacements from a previous tree planting, fall provides an excellent time to