The Wilke Research and Extension Farm is located on the east edge of Davenport, WA. The 320-acre farm was bequeathed to WSU in the 1980’s by Beulah Wilson Wilke for use as an agricultural research facility. Funding for the work at the Wilke Farm comes from research and extension grants and through the proceeds of the crops grown. The research goals are centered on the need to develop cropping systems that enhance farm profitability and improve soil quality.
The Wilke Farm is in an intermediate rainfall zone (12-17 inches of annual precipitation) of eastern Washington in what has historically been a conventional tillage, 3-year rotation of winter wheat, spring cereal (wheat or barley), followed by summer fallow. Historically, wheat has been the most profitable crop in the rotation and the wheat-summer fallow rotation has been the most profitable system.
Since 1998, a portion of the farm has been dedicated to the Wilke Research Project, testing a direct seed, intensive cropping system. The south side of the Wilke Farm is divided into a variety of research plots. Crops grown on the farm since the inception of the Wilke Project have included barley, winter and spring wheat; canola, peas, safflower, sunflowers, yellow mustard, and proso millet. The farm provides an opportunity for demonstration, education, and extension activities for cropping systems research. Due to its location and climate, the Wilke Farm complements other WSU dryland research stations in the Palouse area and at Lind and other locations in the region such as north central Oregon.