Water concerns with wheat will be focus of May 24 field day

AMARILLO – Whether it’s breeding or the new technologies being used to manage irrigation and disease, the primary focus of a May 24 wheat research field day will be water, according to coordinators of the program.

The field day will be held at the Texas AgriLife Research and U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Services Conservation and Production Research Laboratory research farm 1 mile west of Bushland.

“Water is a precious resource here in the Panhandle of Texas and must be carefully managed,” said Dr. Jackie Rudd, AgriLife Research wheat breeder and field day coordinator. “Variety choice, equipment purchases and management decisions all affect water-use efficiency as well as the producers’ bottom line.”

Registration will begin at 9 a.m. and the field tours will begin at 9:30 a.m., Rudd said. The educational portion of the event will continue with an hour-long program just before lunch inside the facilities. In addition, there will be booths for disease diagnostics and pests.

The program has no admission fee and will include a noon lunch. Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units are pending, he said.

The tour discussions will include new wheat varieties, breeding trials, irrigation trials that cover subsurface drip and new sensor technology, drought tolerance mechanisms in wheat, wheat streak mosaic virus and wheat curl mite resistance.

When the program moves indoors, discussions will highlight tortilla wheat, wheat variety licensing, the Bayer Crop Science wheat program and collaboration with the Texas Wheat Producers Board, Rudd said.

The lunch program speaker will be Dr. Craig Nessler, director of AgriLife Research from College Station.

For more information, contact Rudd at 806-677-5600 or jcrudd@ag.tamu.edu .

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