The question that I seem to get most often right now is why are my trees dying? Most of the time, the answer is the drought. Even though we have had some moisture recently, we are still in a severe drought. Driving around the county, you will even see old, big Red Cedars dying in the tree rows. That is because we have had two summers that were extremely hot and dry which baked the ground, and a very mild, dry winter in between. All of this moisture loss stressed the trees out, especially in windbreaks or where trees were ...
WASHINGTON (AP) - The House and Senate Agriculture Committees laid the groundwork this week for reducing the size of the federal food stamp program, approving farm bills that would shrink food aid and alter the way people qualify for it.
Pheasants Forever is hosting fifty-one informational meetings across Kansas for landowners and agricultural producers in advance of the USDA Farm Service Agency's Conservation Reserve Program general sign-up that runs May 20 through June 14. Led by Pheasants Forever Farm Bill Wildlife Biologists, landowners can learn how to increase their farm or ranch income while creating wildlife habitat in the process.
This week, I found a column from K-State's Mary Lou Peter about the rabbits that are out and about. They may be cute hopping around in a field, but when they get into your garden, their cuteness wears a little thin.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Juan M. Garcia announced today that farm payments, which had been temporarily suspended due to sequestration, are scheduled to resume today, May 8th. This includes payments for the 2011 Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments Program (SURE), the Noninsured Crop Assistance Program (NAP) and the Milk Income Loss Contract Program (MILC).
This is finals week at Barton and many of the other colleges around the state. For instructors it's time to evaluate what students learned over the last semester. For students it's time for that one last push to maintain or raise their grades. While faculty see testing as a method to evaluate learning and adjust accordingly, students often see testing as a way to be tortured. Students focus on the grade while faculty focus on learning. In agriculture, as in most curriculums, it is a process of providing the building blocks that provide a foundation on which to ...
In 1955, the National association of Conservation Districts began a national program to encourage Americans to focus on stewardship. Stewardship Week is officially celebrated from the last Sunday in April to the first Sunday in May. It is one of the world's largest conservation-related observances.
Do you have a small backyard? Do you wish you had the space for a garden, but don't want to sacrifice your entire yard to be able to grow your favorite vegetables? Well, an option for you is to garden is a small raised bed. When you garden in a raised bed system, one of the most important things to consider is the soil that you are going to use. One of the major reasons that smaller spaces have better production than larger gardens is that a person adds the soil mix or potting mix so it will have ...
There isn't much to say regarding the wheat crop right now but to wait so let's go in a different direction this week. First, the Crop Protection class at the college toured the area south of the college this past Wednesday travelling as far south as the Hudson area. Normally they can examine wheat, alfalfa, and newly emerged corn. Since the weather went south pretty quickly, the tour was a bit abbreviated. It's safe to assume they didn't find any corn emerged or even germinated. The alfalfa seemed to be doing alright and was recovering well ...
Pheasants Forever is helping to publicize a meeting for landowners interested in learning more about the potential listing of the lesser prairie-chicken (LPC) as a threatened or endangered species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). This issue has been on the minds of western Kansas landowners for the last two years. A final decision is expected from USFWS in September of this year, but there is still plenty of uncertainty about what that ruling will mean for area producers. This uncertainty causes many concerns for land managers. In order to address some of those, Kansas Department of ...
When we think of eating a meal today, images of a person dashing toward the door while chomping down the last bite and yelling good-bye, is an all too common picture. But again, that is only part of the story.
April 28, 2013|
Kansas Farm Bureau
They say that April showers bring May flowers. The question on everybody's mind right now is what do April ice storms bring? This year, for three weeks in a row, this region has experienced temperatures well below freezing with ice and snow adding to the problems. After two severe drought years the good news is we finally are receiving some moisture. The wheat fields may be growing slow, and look promising as of now, but how much more of Mother Nature's changing moods can it handle?
After the last blast of winter this week, we have had three extremely cold, hard freeze events in about two weeks. By the middle of next week at the latest the damage from this last freeze on the developing head should be apparent. Most of the attention has focused on wheat but where are we concerning our spring planted crops? Let's tackle the easy ones first.
Kansas Certified organic produces or farmers interested in becoming certified organic growers are encouraged to apply to receive cost share funds. The cost share program is funded by the 2014 Farm Bill to assist Kansas farmers in paying for organic certification or recertification.
Almost every farmer has said in one way or another, "My life begins with the land." Look at it any way you want but this bedrock principle remains as it has for generations. Land ownership is the key to farming and ranching. Farmers are proud of the crops they grow and the land they work.
June 28, 2015|
John Schlageck, Kansas Farm Bureau
If you are out and about in Barton County right now, you will be able to spot combines rolling through the wheat fields. To me, it is one of the best sites of the year, and I can spend hours watching harvest. All of the hard work raising a crop is coming to the end for a while, and finally, the producer will be able to see a return on the long days he has spent to bring the crop full circle. Many people I have talked to are very pleased with how well the wheat has turned out this ...
Before the rain Thursday night, wheat harvest was running full throttle and overall a much better crop than was predicted. The forecast indicates everyone should be back in the field soon if they aren't already (depending on the rainfall received). A few were commenting their crop would have been better except for late season disease pressure. What happened? Several things.
June 26, 2015|
BY DR. VICTOR L. MARTIN
Agriculture instructor/coordinator for Barton Community College
Let's go to South Africa. A group of scientists are planting a research plot to evaluate how a crop will perform. They are using a specialized planter which provides precise control and data on seed spacing and placement. Would you believe, this planter comes from halfway around the globe in the middle of Kansas?
June 21, 2015|
director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development at Kansas State University
Avian Influenza has been in the local news many times over the last several months. Bird flu, as it is otherwise called first infected humans in China in 1997. In 2003, a larger outbreak of the flu crossing species barriers caused the World Health Organization to keep a closer eye on it and track the two potential viruses that are able to infect not just birds, but mammals including humans as well. The two strains of the virus that have crossed the species barrier are HH5N1 and H7N9 with possible pandemic threats since humans do not have any immunity to ...
We live in the Age of Information. Twenty-four hour news channels, Twitter, the internet, and various forms of social media are prevalent. Many argue, and correctly, that having instant platforms for information and instant access to information is a good thing. However, there is a downside – a lack of vetting of what is presented as data and fact. In the "Good Old Days" news outlets took great pains to verify facts and researchers needed to have articles reviewed by peers for the veracity of the methods used, the analysis of the data, and the conclusions made. While this still happens ...
It seems like only yesterday when I raced my buddies down the red-carpeted ramp of the Pix Theater in Hoxie trying to nail down those good seats. You know the ones I'm talking about – those in the front row where tennis shoes could be heard latching into congealed soda from the earlier matinee.
June 21, 2015|
John Schlageck, Kansas Farm Bureau
Advancements in technology have arguably caused life to move at a much faster pace than it did even a decade ago. The speed at which change takes place today is phenomenal. While these advancements have brought about marvelous positive changes and benefits, they can inadvertently have equally dramatic and damaging negative effects.
June 21, 2015|
Steve Nelson, NRCS Soil Conservation Technician