Summer Crops/OAP Center Pivot Irrigation Field Day set Aug. 9 at Bushland

Writer: Kay Ledbetter, 806-677-5608, skledbetter@ag.tamu.edu
Contact: Dr. Qingwu Xue, 806-354-5803, qxue@ag.tamu.edu

BUSHLAND – A Summer Crops/OAP Center Pivot Irrigation Field Day will be hosted by Texas A&M AgriLife and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service Aug. 9 at the Conservation and Production Research Laboratory.

Three field crops under one center pivot sprinkler system will be discussed at one stop of the Summer Crops/OAP Center Pivot Irrigation Field Day. (Texas A&M AgriLife photo by Kay Ledbetter)

The event is free and will begin at 8 a.m. with registration in Texas A&M AgriLife Research’s new equipment storage barn. Attendees should come to the research farm, located 1 mile west of Bushland on the south side of Interstate 40, where there will be further directions to the event site. Following a welcome, buses will load at 8:45 a.m. for the morning tours.

Dr. Qingwu Xue, AgriLife Research plant physiologist, Amarillo, said the traditional summer field day has been expanded to provide producers and the general public an opportunity to hear crop and irrigation updates from experts participating in the Ogallala Aquifer Program, or OAP.

“We wanted to have a chance to show producers some of the most advanced work being done with irrigation both in row crops and vegetables through our collaborative efforts here at the CPRL,” said Dr. David Brauer, USDA-ARS laboratory director and OAP administrator, Bushland.

In addition, Brauer said, USDA-ARS and AgriLife faculty will be joined by Kansas State University faculty who also work with on OAP-funded projects.

Tour stop topics will include:

– Advanced center pivot control system with integrated inputs, Thomas Marek, AgriLife Research agricultural engineer, Amarillo.

– Multi-level evapotranspiration or ET production function research with three field crops, Xue.

– Soil sensor comparisons under different irrigation levels, Marek.

– Site-specific irrigation scheduling with sensor feedback, Dr. Susan O’Shaughnessy, USDA-ARS agricultural engineer-irrigation automation, Bushland.

– Sprinkler design and nozzle maintenance, Dr. Danny Rogers, KSU Extension agricultural engineer, Manhattan, Kansas.

– Impact of zebra chip disease on crop water-use efficiency in potatoes, Jordan Trees, AgriLife Research graduate student, Amarillo.

– Turfgrass irrigation practices: Making every drop count, Dr. Gary Marek, USDA-ARS agricultural engineer.

– Overview of vegetable research goals for High Plains producers, Dr. Charlie Rush, AgriLife Research plant pathologist, Amarillo.

– Optimizing water use in vegetable production systems, Dr. Paul Colaizzi, USDA-ARS research agricultural engineer, Bushland.

– Plant physiological measurements to optimize water use in vegetables, Dr. Tony Rho, AgriLife Research postdoctoral research associate, Amarillo.

– Pest management in vegetable production systems, Dr. Ada Szczepaniec, AgriLife Research entomologist, Amarillo.

– Mobile drip irrigation performance, Dr. Jonathan Aguilar, KSU Extension water resource engineer, Garden City, Kansas.

– Applications of variable rate irrigation technology, Dr. Freddie Lamm, KSU research irrigation engineer, Colby, Kansas, and Dr. Dana Porter, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service program leader for engineering, Lubbock.

The lunch program will feature a “History of Sprinkler Irrigation on the Texas High Plains” presentation by Jim Bordovsky, AgriLife Research senior research scientist and engineer, Lubbock/Halfway.

Following lunch, a special session for future vegetable growers will take place at the USDA-ARS facilities.

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