If the EPA's proposed rule to redefine waters of the United States becomes law, farming and ranching as we know it today may end.
The State Fair is in high gear and today is Sept. 7. A strong cold front moved through this past Friday and parts of the area have received fairly significant amounts of precipitation over the last week. Much of the immediate area was listed under the Moderate Drought category last Thursday but parts of eastern Barton, Rice, and Ellsworth Counties are a bit better and rated as Moderately Dry. Some producers question this since they are dealing with fields too wet for equipment while other missed out on the rains. It's almost time to plant the 2015 winter wheat ...
I receive many calls during the year about tree health, so I tend to write about trees more than any other subject. Right now, many of the trees in the county are looking a little stressed. There are several different issues that your tree may be trying to handle right now, so to help your tree; finding out what is wrong is the first step to helping it stay healthy.
Some people have the mistaken idea that farmers and ranchers are harming our environment. You hear it everywhere: at the coffee shop, church, public forums, traveling, even in the grocery.
A team of Kansas State University librarians has received its second Project Ceres contract to digitize more than 70 years of Kansas agricultural history.
A U.S. patent was recently awarded for technology created by researchers at Kansas State University that improves the health and welfare of beef cattle and other ruminant animals suffering from lameness and following castration, dehorning and other painful but necessary management procedures.
School is back in session and in Barton County that means it's time for the Annual Kid's Ag Day for area fourth graders. The event takes place this Wednesday, Sept. 3, at the Brining Farm just west of Great Bend. This event has taken place now for over 20 years and works to improve the agricultural literacy of children in Barton County. Everyone from the Chamber of Commerce and area businesses to the Barton County Farm Bureau and area farmers help plan and lend a hand. FFA students from GBHS and Ellinwood bring their animals on their own ...
Imitation dairy products may account for nearly 70 percent of the items a shopper finds in the dairy case today. That's according to the latest data from the dairy industry.
As you drive around the county, you might notice that many trees are starting to look like we are already in fall though summer is still very much upon us. Leaves of area Elm Trees have turned brown, and some may be falling off, giving them a sickly appearance. In many cases, the reason for this is, Elm Leaf Beetles feasting on their leaves. Elm Leaf Beetles are a yearly concern when the second generation hatches about Mid-July. 2014 is no exception.
The Barton County Conservation District (Barton Co CD) board of supervisors will hold a Local Work Group (LWG) meeting at 9:30 a.m. on Sept. 2, at 1520 Kansas Ave, Great Bend.
Kansas Farm Bureau President Steve Baacus and his wife Patricia, as well as Kansas Farm Bureau Executive Director Terry Holdren and his wife Natalie were special guests at the Barton County Farm Bureau annual dinner meeting held Friday evening, Aug. 15 at the Barton Community College Student Union.
While summer isn't quite over, everyone is turning to a fall schedule. If they haven't already, producers are planning and getting ready for the 2015 winter wheat crop and summer crops producers are starting to think about harvest. And many are already thinking about planting decisions for next spring. But there is one more crop plan underway in Kansas – the next crop of persons preparing for careers in some aspect of the agriculture sector.
A century ago when this state consisted mainly of farm and ranch families, it was a common sight to see neighbors helping neighbors. They swapped farm machinery. They loaned labor back and forth to work harvest thrashing crews. A barn raising presented another opportunity for friends to help build and support the community.
This year, despite a late freeze, looks to be a great year for apples. Everywhere I look, I see branches loaded down with ripening fruit. The heavy loads may cause extra strain on the tree, and as the apples increase in size, the additional weight may be substantial. To help your tree be able to bear this weight, you can use one- inch thick boards to prop up limbs. Cut a "V" on the top edge of the board on which the limb will rest so that it doesn't slip off. Long limbs that are heavily loaded with fruit ...
So what can be realistically be done to deal with pesticide resistance once it happens? When pests develop resistance to pesticides, it is a difficult challenge but in most cases not an impossible one. The key to the effectiveness of these management practices include cost, time, markets and climate. Also remember we are speaking about resistance developing in insects and diseases, not just weeds.
Many times when I go out on home visits, the homeowners concerns are with trees on their property. One reason for your trees being in distress may very well be your lawn. If your grass, (especially cool season grasses such as fescue) is allowed to grow up to the trunk of your trees, the competition for water and other nutrients may cause your tree to decline in health. Following is a report on research that has been completed by KSU with more information about the grass and tree competition issue many homeowners have faced.
The two previous columns briefly outlined reasons for the large changes in agriculture over the last century and the results of those changes for the society. Also discussed were the effects these changes had on the practice of agriculture. Now, let's wrap it up and discuss how these changes changed agricultural producers themselves. Please keep in mind these are general trends that don't necessarily mean everyone producing food, fiber, or fuel or that today is bad and a century ago was better or vice-versa..
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reminds livestock producers that the Jan. 30, 2015, deadline to request assistance for losses suffered from Oct. 1, 2011 through Dec. 31, 2014, is fast approaching.
Hype is a word often associated with advertising agencies, public relations firms and spin doctors who attempt to create, change or repair an image. Many people consider hype a dirty word, something to detest.
The 2015 Central Plains Irrigation Conference and Exposition will take place Feb. 17-18 at the City Limits Convention Center, Colby. The popular annual event focused solely on irrigation-related topics is hosted in Kansas every third year. Sponsors include Kansas State University, Colorado State University, the University of Nebraska and the Central Plains Irrigation Association.
All Kansas farmers are invited to the Kansas Commodity Classic on Friday, Feb. 6. The Commodity Classic is the annual convention of the Kansas Corn, Wheat and Grain Sorghum Associations, and will take place at the at the Hilton Garden Inn, 410 S 3rd St, Manhattan, Kan., with registration beginning at 7:30 a.m. It is free to attend and includes a complimentary breakfast and lunch; however pre-registration is requested.
With the advent of 2015, there's hope the Obama administration will follow through on its ambitious trade agenda. Leaders on both sides of the Atlantic agree a more open trade partnership makes sense.
A forester once told me that you know a drought is severe if you see Red Cedar trees dying. All around the county, you can see Cedars in tree rows and windbreaks dead and brown. If you are looking to replace your tree row, The Kansas Forest Service offers low-cost tree and shrub seedlings for use in conservation plantings. Plants are one to two years old and sizes vary from 5 to 18 inches, depending on species. Orders are accepted from now through the first full week in May each year, but order early to insure receiving the items you ...
Last week's column briefly discussed some of the reasons for the large changes in agriculture over the last century. Drivers for change included two World Wars, the Great Depression, economic conditions after WWII, and the Federal Government. One reader pointed out that the column almost painted war as a good thing for agriculture. That wasn't the intent. The fact is the driver for change and the development of new techniques and technologies is typically an event or events forcing and accelerating change. Now, how did events change farming over the last century.
Many authors have documented the rise and fall of civilizations throughout time. Reasons for this rollercoaster effect are numerous-from human-influenced changes such as conquest, culture or religion, to events that occur in the natural environment including changes in climate or the presence of natural resources, such as soil.
Under a bright blue, fall Oklahoma sky in a serene setting, cattle are doing what cattle do – quietly moving through a pasture looking for the next best thing to eat. As they graze, instruments are recording how much methane they are producing.
The good news is, Kansas consumers spend $7.2 billion on food each year. The bad news is, $6.5 billion of it comes from beyond the state's borders, obesity is on the rise, 56 percent of Kansas farmers require secondary income and only eight percent of Kansans have healthy diets, according to a 2010 survey by the Kansas Health Institute.
While food safety will always be the cornerstone of our production process, allegiance is making inroads into why and where consumers buy their products.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is publishing a rule that outlines how it will improve the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), one of USDA's largest conservation programs. The interim final rule includes program changes authorized by Congress in the 2014 Farm Bill.
Although women represented only 28 percent of Kansas farmers in 2012 and the number of farmers is declining overall, women are ramping-up their involvement in several of the state's less common forms of agriculture. The Kansas Rural Center is one organization in Kansas that continues to advance programs to better serve the needs of this historically underserved population.