WSU, a Land Grant College, is dedicated to agriculture production in Washington State. And agriculture, primarily dry-land wheat and barley production, is the primary industry in the Lincoln and East Adams County Area. WSU Faculty and specialists work together to solve agronomic issues, providing education and information on innovative crop production methods, pest identification and management, new seed varieties, to local producers through field tours, workshops, seminars, and pesticide courses. See menu links for categories of information.
Visit the WSU Small Grains Website for latest information from WSU.
Low Soil pH: To Lime or Not to Lime
In the PNW, the average pH in the top 12 inches of soil declined from near neutral to lower than 5.7 by 1984 after years of nitrogen fertilizer applications. Soil pH further declined to lower than 5.2 by 1995, after another 10 years nitrogen fertilizer application. A soil survey conducted by Paul Carter (WSU) in 2014 found that 97% of surveyed minimum and no-till wheat fields in the Columbia County had a soil pH lower than 5.0 at 3-6 inch (seed/rooting zone) soil depths. Similar survey numbers have been observed in many areas across the eastern Washington dryland crop production areas. The soil pH will continue to decline as a result of continued nitrogen fertilizer applications if no mitigation actions are taken to reverse the acidification process. In fact, our recent survey found that many grower fields or areas of fields have pH values as low as 4.0. Some farmers in Montana have reported extremely low soil pH on their farms and those fields are no longer suitable for some crop production.
Weeds are the bane of many a farmers’ existences in eastern Washington. It seems we are in a constant battle to keep weeds under control. As part of that effort, WSU weed scientists, Drew Lyon and Ian Burke, manage numerous field studies to evaluate new herbicides, and new uses of older herbicides to manage weeds of concern to dryland farmers in eastern Washington. These studies are summarized in the annual WSU Weed Control Report.
Weed Control Report from WSU Small Grains
Wilke Report Available
The WSU Wilke Research and Extension Farm Operation, Production, and Economic Performance for 2017 Report is now available for download.
Lind Field Day
If you missed the Lind Field Day in June – Field Day Abstracts are available for download! To download, go to the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences page, under the Extension tab, and click the page Field Day Abstracts. There are Field Day Abstracts available from 2004-2018.
Residue Yield Calculator is Now Online
Crop residue is a valuable by-product in crop production. Leaving adequate amounts of residue on agriculture fields can effectively control soil erosion and improve soil health. Crop residue can also be used as a feedstock for biofuel, paper, or mushroom production and as feed and bedding for livestock.
Estimating how much crop residue your crop can produce is important for understanding how the residue can be used to add economic or ecological benefits to your farm’s operation. Unlike estimating grain yield, which is typically measured directly through yield monitoring, residue production is generally estimated indirectly based on grain yield.
Visit Smallgrains.wsu.edu for Residue Yield Calculator
Seeding Rate Converter is Online
Seeding rate is among the many factors that affect grain yield that can be controlled. The ability to control seeding rate allows farmers flexibility in their management practices. For example, when fall seeding is delayed the tillering period is shortened. To compensate for this reduction in fall tillers, farmers can increase seeding rates.
To some extent, wheat is inherently capable of compensating for factors that influence yield. However, optimum seeding rate are required to optimize the plant population, which in turn is important for maximizing grain yield and quality and controlling weeds.
Seeding rates are typically expressed as seeds per acre or pounds per acre. Determining seeding rates using pounds per acre is problematic because MORE on Smallgrains.wsu.edu
Wheat All About It! A Podcast
Ever wish there was a way to listen to a magazine in your truck, tractor, combine or maybe even your easy chair with your eyes closed? Then the Washington Grain Commission-sponsored podcast, Wheat All About It! is for you. About 20 minutes in length, the podcast can be downloaded to your smart phone or computer or streamed. Download times vary depending on speed of the connection. Coffee shops, parts shops and libraries often have fast Wi-Fi to download episodes quickly. Click here for more information: http://wagrains.org/cast/
or here: http://smallgrains.wsu.edu/wheat-all-about-it-podcasts/
Washington State Crop Improvement Association, Inc.
A non-profit organization working with Washington State University, Oregon State University, along with other Public and Private breeding programs, as well as with Washington State Department of Agriculture and Washington seed growers and conditioners to develop, produce and distribute certified seed in order to improve crop quality and yields in Washington.
Weed Control Report
The 2016 WSU Weed Control Report is now available on the Wheat and Small Grains website. The annual report summarizes the results from field studies conducted by Ian Burke, Drew Lyon, and their staff. The research was conducted in winter wheat, spring wheat, chemical fallow, grasslands, alfalfa, chickpeas, and dry pea
No-till farming in the Pacific Northwest
WSU publication on “Falling Numbers.” Producers dealing with wheat quality issues should check it out on http://pubs.wpdev.cahnrs.wsu.edu/pubs/fs242e/
More information available on Falling Numbers or other current grain quality issues are on Wheat and Small Grains Grain Quality Resources Page.
Enterprise budget for intermediate & low rainfall regions
The Extension publication “Enterprise Budgets: Wheat & Canola Rotations in Eastern Washington Intermediate Rainfall (12-16″) Zone (Oilseed Series)” is now available. Click here for a pdf of the publication. The accompanying Excel spreadsheet workbook can be accessed here.
This budget and the low rainfall version with its workbook (available here) are powerful tools to calculate and compare the short and long-term economics of including canola in a cereal rotation.
Be on the lookout for Rust & other disease issues!
Click here to find updates
Farm Bill Information
Decision Aids, Outreach & Education, and Farm Bill News is available on the WSU smallgrains website.
Video Presentation: Growth & Development in Wheat Crops
This presentation by Ron Rickman and Tami Johlke outlines how to determine normal growth and development in wheat crops and was part of the WSU Extension Wheat Academy.
Extension is for Everyone
Extension programs and policies are consistent with federal and state laws and regulations on nondiscrimination regarding race; sex/gender; sexual orientation; gender identity/expression; religion; age; color; creed; national or ethnic origin; physical, mental, or sensory disability, including disability requiring the use of a trained service animal; marital status, genetic information, and/or status as an honorably discharged veteran or member of the military. Report concerns to oeo.wsu.edu, 509-335-8288, or your local Extension office. Requests for special accommodations at Lincoln-Adams Extension Events can be made at least two weeks in advance by calling 509-659-3209 or 509-725-4171.