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Northwest Iowa Dairy Outlooks

A local discussion of current science and issues concerning dairying in northwest iowa

Dr. Todd Baughman has this update on the wheat situation in parts of Oklahoma from Jeff Edwards the wheat specialist up there.  He notes that much of the same is true for the Rolling Plains.  The main thing he wanted to point out was that Jeff had observed early maturing varieties (Fannin and Overly) planted in September had reached first hollow-stem as of the third week of February. 

Therefore, even if we do get moisture growers will need to look at their wheat to determine the growth stage prior to applying top-dress fertilizer.  Wheat that is already jointing will not respond to applications of Nitrogen fertilizer at this stage, so producers should save their money if they have not already top-dressed in these cases.  However, with later planted wheat with later maturing varieties it may still be viable to apply top-dress fertilizer.  That is why it is critical to look at the growth stage before making that decision.

In Jeff Edwards, PhD, Small Grains Extension Specialist, Oklahoma State University report he notes that he spent a day last week looking for freeze-injury in wheat. He made a loop from Stillwater to Okeene north to Ringwood and back and failed to find freeze injury that went beyond cosmetic damage. Based on what he observed he concluded that injury from last week’s frigid temperatures is by and large cosmetic in nature. It is not hard to find late-emerging fields or heavily-grazed fields that are in rough shape and the freeze probably made this situation worse. The prolonged drought we have experienced, however, is still the main source of limited growth and yield potential in these fields. If we do not receive moisture in southwestern and far western OK in the near future, the wheat crop in these areas could certainly be in jeopardy.

We have found plants that are at the first hollow stem stage of growth in September-sown plots of Fannin and Overley at Stillwater.


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