Tag Archives: crops

The 2018 Irrigation and Water Management Survey results are out this week, showing that over 231,400 farms irrigated 55.9 million acres. That included 83.4 million acre-feet of water in the United States.

By way of comparison, the 2013 survey showed there were just over 229,230 farms that irrigated 55.3 million acres, which included 88.5 million acre-feet of water. The results show that even though the number of farms irrigating, and the amount of land increased slightly over those five years, the total amount of water used to irrigate land actually declined.

The 83.4 million acre-feet of water used to irrigate land in 2018 represent a 5.8 percent drop from 2013. The average acre-feet applied to land was 1.5, which is lower than the 1.6 in 2013. An acre-foot is the amount of water required to cover one acre to a depth of one foot.

The largest portion of irrigated farmland acres in the U.S. was dedicated to cropland, including grains and oilseeds, vegetables, nurseries, greenhouses, as well as hay crops. The survey also shows that more acres are irrigated with sprinkler systems than with gravity irrigation.

MANHATTAN, Kan. — A Kansas State University student took top honors and the K-State Crops Team placed second in the Australian University Crops Competition recently. The event was hosted by the Australian Grain Growers organization and was held at the University of Adelaide in South Australia.

Luke Ryan, junior in agronomy from Solomon, Kansas won top individual honors overall.

The University of Sydney placed first in the team competition, K-State placed second, and Charles Sturt University from Wagga Wagga, Australia, was third.

Three students from South Dakota State University traveled with the K-State team and participated in the competition. The teams competed against agricultural universities from across Australia.

K-State Crops Team members making the trip included top winner Luke Ryan, plus Jayden Meyer, Smith Center, junior in agricultural economics; Wes Jennings, Abilene, senior in agronomy; Nate Dick, Inman, senior in agronomy; Madison Tunnell, Olathe, junior in agronomy and Blake Kirchhoff, Hardy, Nebraska, junior in agronomy. The team was accompanied by coach Kevin Donnelly, professor of agronomy. This was the fifth trip for the K-State team since 2012 to participate in the Australian competition.

Ryan, Meyer and Jennings were awarded a stipend from the American Society of Agronomy to cover part of their travel expenses as a result of previously placing in the top three at the U.S. Collegiate Crops Contests in Kansas City and Chicago last November. Additional sponsors of the K-State team were Kansas Grain Sorghum, Kansas Corn, Syngenta, and the K-State Department of Agronomy. The College of Agriculture also provided an international travel scholarship to the K-State students.

The trip was a combination of work, learning and sightseeing, which also proved educational for the students.

The competition portion spanned three days at the University of Adelaide’s Roseworthy Campus. The contest included a seed identification section, three exams over production of selected Australian crops, a business management problem, field yield estimates and management recommendations, and a live crop, weed and disease evaluation component.

Before the competition, the group spent a day touring tropical agriculture in Queensland, learning about bananas, coffee, avocados, and sugarcane, and visited a large grain farm in South Australia featuring mixed cropping of wheat, canola and pulses. After the contest, they visited a sheep farm, a cherry orchard, a vineyard, and an apple orchard and processing facility in the Adelaide Hills area. They also travelled to Kangaroo Island, visiting grain farms and KI Pure Grain, the island’s major cooperative grain handling and export business. Learning about canola and Australian white wheat production, ryegrass herbicide resistance problems, and the use of pulse crops such as lentils and fava beans in crop rotations were highlights for the U.S. teams.

The students also took a snorkeling trip to the Great Barrier Reef at Cairns, with a visit to Sydney Harbor and the Sydney Opera House on the trip to Adelaide. After the contest, they spent two days touring Kangaroo Island. Highlights were observing the majestic coastal rock formations, beaches with seals and dolphins, and kangaroos and koala bears in the wild.

The Illinois Department of Agriculture recently announced additional label restrictions for the 2020 growing season for dicamba. Agriculture Director John Sullivan announced the rules due to a dramatic rise in the number of off-target complaints received during the 2019 growing season, adding “the department is taking action to reduce those numbers.”

The new restrictions halt the use of dicamba after June 20, 2020. The new regulations also prohibit the application of dicamba if the air temperature at the field at the time of application is over 85 degrees Fahrenheit, or if the National Weather Service’s forecasted high temperature for the nearest available location for the day of application exceeds 85 degrees.

Applicators also must maintain the label-specified downwind buffer between the last treated row and the nearest downfield edge of any Illinois Nature Preserves Commission site. In addition to these provisions’, applicators must follow the federal guidelines when it comes to applying dicamba, including taking an annual certified applicator training course.

WICHITA, Kan. — Registration is now open for the 24th annual No-till on the Plains Winter Conference. Online registration is open for growers, industry partners and soil health enthusiasts to attend the popular soil health expo and educational event. The Conference will take place January 28-29, 2020 at the Hyatt Regency and Century II Convention Center, Wichita, Kan. This annual event offers great networking opportunities for attendees, and Wichita offers ample entertainment and dining options. Registration is available at www.notill.org

In its 24th year, the Conference continues to offer international, national and state experts focused on improved soil health systems for increased farm profit. The 2019 Winter Conference features a line-up of farmers, soil health researchers and conservation professionals aiming to share their expertise and knowledge with attendees.

Registration for the No-till on the Plains Conference is available now online at notill.org. The Winter Conference registration price is $275. Walk-ins are welcome but rates increase closer to the event date. Registration rates are also available in packages for those who want to attend the Fundamentals of Soil Health Workshop and the Winter Conference together, or the Winter Conference and Advanced Concepts in Soil Health Symposium in tandem. Discounted rooms rates are available at the Hyatt Regency Hotel

This year’s speaker lineup features physician, author and lecturer Dr. Daphne Miller, Dr. Miller is the author of Farmacology, Total Health from the Ground Upan eloquent call for better systems of sustainable agriculture and humanistic health care. In linking the two, Dr. Miller brings a physician’s critical eye account of what she learned about taking care of patients from visits to farmers who view growing food as part of a self-sustaining, integrated, natural cycle.

The diverse lineup of speakers this year also includes: Brendon Rockey, producer from Colorado; Ian and Diane Haggerty, producers from Australia; John Kempf, innovative soil and plant health consultant from Ohio, Jason Mauck, producer from Indiana; Doug Peterson, USDA soil health specialist from Missouri, and Steve Groff, cover crop and industrial hemp expert from Pennsylvania.

Attendees have several options to attend additional soil health workshops before and after the Conference. On Monday January 27th, An introductory level event, Fundamentals of Soil Health, is being offered for individuals looking for the basics of getting started with no-till and improved soil health. Also on the 27th is an offering of more advanced information. Advanced Concepts in Soil Health, The Above and Below, features John Kempf and Michael Phillips presenting on plant health, nutrient optimization, fungal connections in the soil and building a soil network. Certified Crop Advisor Credits will also be available for conference attendees.

Sponsors for the 2020 Winter Conference are: Green Cover Seed, Farmers Business Network, General Mills Exapta Solutions, The NoRegrets Initiative and the Ceres Trust. All of these generous sponsors will be available to attendees throughout the Conference.

Visit notill.org or call (785) 210-4549 for registration information. Pre-registration online is encouraged.