• P.J. Griekspoor

    Cover Crops Prove Value in Drought

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on January 25, 2012

    Gail Fuller farms near Emporia and like most of Kansas, was hit hard by severe heat and dry weather conditions last summer. At the end of the summer, he was more convinced that ever that continuous cover crops pay, even with no rain and temperatures over 100 degrees for weeks. Fuller told attendees at the annual No-Till on the Plains Conference in Salina that soil temperatures on acres with cover crops were as much as 30 degrees cooler than without them. His latest experiment: companion…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Warm Weather Is Double Edged Sword For Wheat Farmers

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on January 24, 2012

    TV weathermen are on a nightly rant about how "nice" the January weather is as temperatures in the 50s and 60s continue to dominate the scene, with more of the same in the forecast for the end of the month. As we move toward February, we're nearing the end of traditional winter and farmers are watching wheat fields with trepidation. Moisture loss at this time of year is critical to wheat farmers and it is occurring in a serious way. South Central Kansas has received no rain or snow for…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    In Farm Country, Support for Light-Squared: What?!

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on January 19, 2012

    Most folks in farm country have weighed in against the licensing of Light-Squared, the new player in the cell phone market that promises to deliver broadband to the remotest areas of rural America where there is currently no signal. Problem is, the delivery comes on the frequency next door to GPS. It is the equivalent, said one presenter at Thursday's Kansas Agricultural Technologies Conference, of trying to speak in a hotel conference room while Led Zepplin cranks up at full bore in the…

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  • P.J. Griekspoor

    Wheat Crop Hopes Rise on Wet December

    Kansas Viewpoint

     by P.J. Griekspoor
     on January 12, 2012

    The good news is the December rains -- an average of 1.69 inches across the state -- really helped the hard red  wheat crop recover from a dry summer and fall. Topsoil moisture is now adequate and the current cold spell should help restore winter hardiness to the crop. The extra warm weather of early January -- highs pushing 60 -- were enough to cause the wheat to green up and even start growing across southern Kansas. But agronomists say that night-time temperatures below freezing…

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