MANHATTAN – Adrian J. Polansky, state executive director of USDA's Farm Service Agency in Kansas announced Friday that emergency haying and grazing of Conservation Reserve Program acreage has been authorized in 91 Kansas Counties, effective Monday.
Tomorrow starts finals' week for students at Barton with graduation ceremonies Thursday evening. While things are winding down a bit at the college, lots of activities from other graduations to area events and farming activities are ramping up. With that in mind, here are some random items.
There was a photograph with a paragraph attached to it this past week in the paper about a hay fire in the area. The information indicated the cause of the fire appeared to be spontaneous combustion. Several students in the college's agriculture program were curious exactly what the term spontaneous combustion meant and what caused it to happen. So what is spontaneous combustion and why does it happen to baled hay?
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced $19.7 million of financial and technical assistance to help communities rebuild and repair damages caused by flooding, drought, and other natural disasters. Funds are made available through the Natural Resources Conservation Service's (NRCS) Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) Program.
The last two weeks briefly described the process of soil formation and the role soils play in agriculture and our lives. Let's start to take that information and see what that means for soils in Kansas and more specifically in our area. First, where is our state in terms of the soil forming factors?
At 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 10, the Kansas-based agencies of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will host a celebration for the 150th anniversary of the establishment of USDA. The event will also include the dedication of a new wind erosion research facility and wheat/sorghum milling laboratory.
Last week featured an extremely condensed version on the formation of soils. Now let's briefly examine the roles of soil in our world. First, broad definitions of the soil are helpful. Soil can be defined as the skin of the earth or the area of exchange between the earth and the atmosphere. The soil is also defined as a dynamic, living organism consisting of organic and inorganic components. While soil profiles (the vertical extent of the soil) vary in depth from inches to over ten feet, let's assume a depth of 3 feet. The distance from the earth ...
Good morning again. With the warm, windy days we have been having the past week or two I am sure everyone has gardening and yard work on the mind. Well I have a short to do list that you can consider for March.
Stripe rust has been found in several fields of wheat in south central Kansas, including Barton County. At the time it was found, it was still at low levels and in trace amounts. With the cool wet weather we have been experiencing, it is something that producers should be on the watch for, and scouting their fields to identify and monitor.
Picture transitioning from a rural setting that includes woodlands, wildlife habitat and farms, to urban areas that consist of concrete, parking lots, streets and buildings. Rural land in a more natural state has the ability to soak up water in the soil more efficiently than urban areas with impervious surfaces that can lead to more runoff.
The last several columns provided general background on the rapidly expanding organic foods market. Today's column briefly outlines conventionally produced foods to highlight the differences between the two. Perhaps the first question to deal with is "Are conventionally produced foods inorganic?"
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?