How do you really know spring has arrived? Beyond the obvious signs like wheat greening up, daffodils blooming and springing forward, the Great Bend area has its own particular way. Next week from April 10-12 at the Expo Center the second annual Great Bend Farm and Ranch Expo takes place and promises to put an exclamation point on the start of the spring farming season. Farmers and ranchers love looking at new technology, state of the art equipment, maybe snagging a bargain and catching up with people they may only see once a year. That's why the agricultural community ...
When you are trying to grow a garden, the more information you have at the beginning of the growing season, the better potential your garden will produce well during the year. One piece of information that is easy to investigate is a soil test. A soil test is an inexpensive method to determine how healthy your soil is, and what you can do to improve it to help your plants be healthy also. A gardener will want to test every 1- 5 years. This test will tell you what nutrients are available for your plants to use to grow, and ...
Cattlemen across much of Kansas are in a quandary. As grass managers, they are asking themselves how many cattle will their ranges and pastures support after twenty to thirty months of drought. What steps can be taken to protect the grazing resources while maintaining enough cattle numbers to be financially viable? Will we get enough runoff to fill the ponds?
If you've ever heard the stampeding sound of a tornado or been close enough to see fence posts, the side of a building or the steel of a grain bin twisting furiously as the dreaded black monster gobbles up the countryside, you'll remember it always.
March 31, 2013|
John Schlageck, Kansas Farm Bureau
We all know the answer to the title of this article is no. However, the reaction of some media outside of Kansas and other drought stricken areas implied that at the very least the worst is over. While that isn't true, things are a bit better. Our area has moved from the worst rating, exceptional, to the second worst rating, extreme. This is true of much of central Kansas. Much of the eastern third of the state has moved to severe and an area around Kansas City is all the way up to just being moderate. Unfortunately, much of ...
Pheasants Forever and their regional partners are hosting four informational meetings for landowners to discuss the benefits of forming a local Prescribed Burn Association (PBA). Prescribed Burn Associations are landowner-led cooperatives that bring people together to assist each other with prescribed burns in rangeland and CRP. This allows individual landowners to overcome obstacles to safe burning, such as a lack of experience, equipment, or manpower. Safer burns mean reduced liability risks to landowners, less risk of wildfire outbreak, and greater community safety. Partners assisting with the meetings are: USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service, local county Conservation Districts, Rice County Fire Districts ...
When the 2008 Farm Bill was given a stay of execution in the "fiscal cliff" deal in January, those of us outside of the Beltway were given few details about how the extension would impact producers and conservation programs. Conservation Title programs were supposed to be back-though some would be receiving limited funding.
March 17, 2013|
Zac Eddy â€“ Pheasants Forever Farm Bill Wildlife Biologist
We all know the answer to the title of this article is no. However, the reaction of some media outside of Kansas and other drought stricken areas implied that at the very least the worst is over. While that isn't true, things are a bit better. Our area has moved from the worst rating this week, exceptional, to the second worst rating, extreme. This is true of much of central Kansas. Much of the eastern third of the state has moved to severe and an area around Kansas City is all the way up to just being moderate. Unfortunately ...
Kansas farmers, ranchers and landowners the deadline to file a Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasures Plan (SPCC) looms just around the corner. As of May 10, any farmer, rancher or landowner who has petroleum products of 1,320 gallons or more, in above-ground tanks 55 gallons or greater, must have a spill prevention and countermeasures plan in place as required by the Environmental Protection Agency.
March 17, 2013|
John Schlageck, Kansas Farm Bureau
The Kansas Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is renewing its commitment to help Kansas farmers build healthy soils. Our vision is to improve soil quality and build healthy productive soils in order to sustain life, resources, and communities.
Few wheat farmers are given an opportunity to shape the future of their industry by engaging in research, marketing and promotion efforts. The Kansas Wheat Commission, however, has an opportunity for wheat farmers to do just that.
This past Wednesday, the Barton County Farm Bureau held their annual Farm Safety Day at the College for area high school juniors and seniors. Hopefully, you have read the article in the March 7th edition of the Tribune. Anyone around farming or ranching understands the potential dangers inherent in the industry, but just how dangerous is it?
Lately, I have been getting many calls with people concerned with small mounds in their turf, making it difficult to mow, work or play in their yard. Most of the time, the issue is earthworms that are very active at this time of year. In my research, I came across this short piece of information on nightcrawlers, from the K-State Entomology department. I thought I would share this to give more infomation about these beneficial but sometimes annoying worms.
This week wraps up the discussion of "organic" foods before comparing them to "conventionally" produced foods. Last week's column briefly described what organic means in general terms. When you purchase a product "Certified Organic" what does that really mean?
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $73 million to rehabilitate dams across the nation in an effort to protect public health and safety and evaluate the expansion of water supply in drought stricken areas. USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is investing in approximately 150 projects and assessments in 23 states. "Millions of people depend on watersheds and dams for protection from floods and providing clean drinking water," Vilsack said. "By investing in this critical infrastructure, we are helping to ensure a safe, resilient environment for rural America."
At this time of year, many gardeners are starting vegetables indoors, or preparing to buy small plants to transplant into their garden when the soil temperature is warm enough. To help with this process, it is sometimes a good idea to give the small plants a little extra fertilizer to help them get a good start. I found a column from the K-State Research and Extension's horticulture department that gives some good advice on transplant solutions and sidedressing to help you give your garden the best start possible.
The Kansas Flint Hills have served as a home and food source for stocker cattle since the mid-1800s, when cowboys drove longhorns up the Chisholm Trail from the southwestern United States to Kansas railways. Flash forward to today: research from Kansas State University on this staple resource could help ensure profitable years ahead for stocker producers.
K-State Research and Extension is offering 4-H Leadership Boot Camp on April 25 in Hoisington, available to all interested persons. Call 785-483-3157 to register. For more information about this, as well as more localized events, check with the local K-State Research and Extension office.
Last week's column explored in general terms what organic means to chemists and the scientific community and what it means to the "natural" foods community. This series of articles isn't intended to take sides but to provide information to help in making informed decisions. Now let's briefly attempt to get a handle on what exactly "organic" foods are. This involves several parts and it is important to note there are foodstuffs claiming to be organic and foodstuffs that have followed certain strict requirements and are certified as organic.