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Last Ralston Field Day Set, June 1

PULLMAN, Wash. — Washington State University is closing down a nine-year research project on the short-term and intermediate agronomic feasibility of annual spring cereal cropping systems for the Pacific Northwest crop-fallow region.

Frank Young, USDA-Agricultural Research Service agronomist, said the research project is being shut down because it has accomplished its mission.

The project began in 1995, utilizing between 20 and 40 acres of land on the Curtis and Erika Hennings farm near Ralston. As cooperators, the Hennings gave WSU and USDA scientists free use of the land.

The fifth and final field day reporting research results to farmers will be held 8:30 a.m.-Noon, Tuesday, June 1, at the Hennings farm.

People attending the field day will be divided into two groups for simultaneous tours of research plots. The tour is free. A no-host luncheon will cost $5.

Formal presentations will feature the trends and trade-offs of the various crop systems tested during the past nine years.

Studies have included weed and disease shifts, soil moisture and nutrient management, tillage, erosion control, and carbon sequestration.

Reports will include:

  • Northern Regional Performance Nursery – Adaptation of disease resistant hard winter wheat varieties – Kim Garland Campbell, wheat geneticist, USDA/ARS, Pullman.
  • Carbon sequestration potential of intermediate and long-term no-till crop systems – Bill Pan, soil scientist and chair of the WSU crop and soil sciences department.
  • Soil borne diseases in annual spring cereals vs. winter wheat/summer fallow rotation – Dick Smiley, plant pathologist, Oregon State University, Pendleton, Ore.
  • Crop and weed management in facultative spring wheat vs. normal planted spring wheat and introduction to newest cropping systems, Phase III, Ralston Project – Frank Young, weed scientist, USDA/ARS, Pullman.
  • Weed control in chemical fallow systems – Joe Yenish, WSU extension weed scientist, Pullman.
  • Weed management and soil moisture in chemical fallow – Bill Schillinger, WSU agronomist, Lind, Wash.

The Hennings farm is on Highway 261, about 13 miles south of Ritzville, or 10 miles north of Washtucna, then 3 miles west on Providence Road.

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Media Contacts

John Burns, WSU Extension, 09-335-5831