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K-State Agronomy eUpdates

Department of Agronomy

Kansas State University

1712 Claflin Rd.

2004 Throckmorton PSC

Manhatan, KS 66506

785-532-6101

agronomy@ksu.edu

Extension Agronomy

First hollow stem update: February 19, 2016

With the warm temperatures observed during the week of Feb. 15-19 in most of Kansas, producers may be concerned their wheat crop is more advanced than it should be for this time of the year. Warmer temperatures will speed up crop development, and varieties that have already met their vernalization requirement may start greening up and expanding their hollow stem (for more information on warm winter temperatures effects on wheat, please see the article “Possible consequences of warm winter temperatures on wheat” in the Feb. 19, 2016 issue of the Agronomy eUpdate).

Cattle should be removed from wheat pastures when the crop reaches first hollow stem (FHS). Grazing past this stage can severely affect wheat yields (for a full explanation, please refer to eUpdate article “Optimal time to remove cattle from wheat pastures: First hollow stem” in the Feb. 5, 2016 issue).

The K-State Extension Wheat and Forages crew measures FHS on a weekly basis in 23 different commonly grown wheat varieties in Kansas. Ten stems are split open per variety per replication, for a total of 40 stems monitored per variety. The varieties are in a September-sown replicated trial at the South Central Experiment Field near Hutchinson, in cooperation with Gary Cramer, Agronomist-in-Charge of the Field.

The average length of hollow stem is reported in Table 1. As of Feb. 19, the more advanced varieties have between 0.06 and 0.11 cm of hollow stem and therefore are not yet close to achieving FHS, which occurs at 1.5 cm (about a half-inch). From a FHS perspective, producers grazing wheat in the south central region of Kansas do not have to worry yet about removing cattle from wheat pastures at this point, regardless of the variety. However, reports from Jeff Edwards, former Oklahoma State University Small Grains Extension Specialist, indicate that a few varieties had already reached FHS on February 16 at Stillwater, in the north central region of Oklahoma. Thus, producers near the southern board of Kansas who currently graze their wheat and intend to harvest it for grain are encouraged to check for FHS from a non-grazed area of their fields during the next few days.

 

 

Table 1. Length of hollow stem measured on Feb. 16, 2016 of 23 wheat varieties sown Sept. 26, 2015 near Hutchinson. The critical FHS length for purposes of cattle removal is 1.5 cm.

Variety

Hollow stem length

 

cm

1863

0.09

Bentley

0.05

Danby

0.03

Doublestop CL Plus

0.03

Duster

0.03

Everest

0.06

Gallagher

0.06

KanMark

0.06

LCS Chrome

0.03

LCS Mint

0.05

LCS Pistol

0.06

LCS Wizard

0.05

Overley

0.11

Ruby Lee

0.08

SY Flint

0.05

SY Wolf

0.05

T158

0.03

TAM 114

0.04

WB 4303

0.11

WB 4458

0.10

WB Cedar

0.09

WB Grainfield

0.05

WB Redhawk

0.08

Variety

p = 0.02

LSD (0.05)

0.05

 

The intention of this report to is provide producers a weekly update on first hollow stem of different wheat varieties in the current growing season. Producers should use this information as a guide, but it is extremely important to monitor FHS from an ungrazed portion of each individual wheat pasture to take the decision of removing cattle from wheat pastures.

 

Romulo Lollato, Wheat and Forages Specialist
lollato@ksu.edu

DooHong Min, Forage Agronomist
dmin@ksu.edu

Rafael Maeoka, Assistant Scientist
maeoka@ksu.edu

Amanda de Oliveira Silva, Graduate Research Assistant
adeolive@ksu.edu

Brent Jaenisch, Graduate Research Assistant
bjaenisch5@ksu.edu

Gary Cramer, Agronomist-in-Charge, South Central Experiment Field
gcramer@ksu.edu