June 7, 2013
Western Nebraska Crop Reports
Karen DeBoer, Extension Educator in Kimball, Banner, and Cheyenne Counties: The wheat condition in the southern Panhandle varies considerably from very poor to good with the majority in the poor to fair category. The recent rains did help, however, the stands are short and very uneven in many fields. The uneven stands are more evident as the wheat heads out. There are also reports of wheat damaged from hail that accompanied the storms. There will be some benefit from the moisture since it came before flowering. It may help with kernel fill (test weight). Flowering and pollination will occur over the next several days which are forecast to be much warmer.
There are no reports of stripe rust in our area, however, producers are planning to spray irrigated wheat acres with fungicide to protect the flag leaf. It is possible stripe rust could develop, but warmer weather may have an influence on its development.
In many cases irrigated wheat looks much better than dryland and is actually heading out before the dryland wheat, which would not be expected in a year with normal fall precipitation. Late planted fields do not look good.
The rains have benefited the spring planted crops, like field peas and corn. Proso millet and sunflowers are currently being planted on dryland acres. The depth of soil moisture is still questionable for the deeper rooted crops on dryland acres.
Dipak Santra, UNL Small Grain Breeder, Panhandle REC: The recent rain will be very helpful in filling grain for the wheat which already flowered or is flowering, but it is of little use to the fields that don't have a good stand or are in very poor health.
Robert Klein, Western Nebraska Crops Specialist: The rains will certainly help the winter wheat crop in areas that received it, but many fields are still very short on soil water. With poor winter wheat stands, plant competition is low and weeds are coming on strong. Many winter wheat fields will benefit from a harvest aid treatment. These
treatments will not only benefit harvest but also will benefit weed control post harvest.
Weeds that are cut off at harvest are difficult to control. Make sure that the harvest aid treatment you select does not have rotation restrictions for crops you may select to follow the winter wheat crop. Winter wheat will be filling late this year and could be subject to higher temperatures during this critical growth period. High temperatures, above 85 degrees, during the filling period reduce yields.
Robert Wright, Extension Entomologist: Aphids have been reported in wheat in southwest Nebrska. For more information on treatment thresholds, see information in the Insect Management section of CropWatch.