Wheat Tour 2024, Day 2

Kansas Wheat

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Contact: Marsha Boswell, [email protected]

For audio version, visit kswheat.com.

On Wednesday, 69 people on the Wheat Quality Council’s 2024 winter wheat tour made their way from Colby to Wichita, Kansas, stopping in wheat fields along six different routes.

 

Wednesday’s wheat tour scouts made 216 stops at wheat fields across western, central and southern Kansas, and into northern counties in Oklahoma.

 

The calculated yield from all cars was 42.4 bushels per acre. Scouts were able to use the late season formula provided by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, which includes counting wheat heads, number of spikelets and kernels per spikelet. The yield formula doesn’t take disease, pests or weed pressure into consideration.

 

Romulo Lollato said the theme of the day was variability, even within fields. Groups saw a lot of drought stress and freeze damage, with some fields already being destroyed. Not as much stripe rust or Wheat Streak Mosaic Virus were observed on Wednesday, compared to Tuesday, likely due to drought conditions.

 

Farmers in the area reported that combines will probably start rolling by June 1 in south central Kansas, about seven to ten days earlier than average. There wasn’t as much fungicide applied in the southern areas of Kansas because the stripe rust started coming on in a later growth stage.

 

“This year is a testament to the wheat breeders and researchers and the work they’ve done,” said Derek Sawyer, who farms near McPherson. “This year, everything has been stressed across the state, but we’re still looking at a decent crop.”

 

Dennis Schoenhals from Oklahoma Wheat Commission reported that the state’s production was estimated at 96.2 million bushels this year, up from 68.6 million bushels last year, according to USDA’s NASS. USDA/NASS estimates the Oklahoma crop will yield 37 bushels per acre, compared with 28 last year. Harvested acres are estimated at 2.6 million acres. A tour of agronomists and others in the industry estimated the production slightly lower than the NASS estimate, at 89.3 million bushels and a yield of 33 bushels per acre. He said the Oklahoma wheat crop had good moisture through the end of January, but then they had an 83 day flash drought, which took the top end of the crop. He said it has had good, cool grainfill weather.

 

Wheat Tour 24 continues Thursday with six routes between Wichita and Manhattan. Follow along with the tour at #wheattour24. A final production estimate will be announced Thursday afternoon.

 

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