Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications
AMARILLO – Wheat Freeze Assessment Sessions will be held April 17-18 across the High Plains, South Plains and Rolling Plains after temperatures dipped into the teens and low 20s on April 9-10, threatening much of Texas’ wheat crop.
Dr. Calvin Trostle, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service agronomist in Lubbock, and Dr. Clark Neely, AgriLife Extension state small grains and oilseeds specialist in College Station, will attend the meetings to help evaluate samples participants bring and train them to spot freeze damage.
“We have indeed unquestionable and major potential injury on our wheat crop for grain,” Trostle said. “The absolute temperature is one factor and the duration of these temperatures is another. When combined, these two issues significantly raise the injury potential.”
He said temperatures in the northwest and northern South Plains hovered around 20-22 degrees; the Amarillo region, 20 degrees; the southeast Panhandle, 22-25 degrees; and north of the Canadian River, about 15-20 degrees. Some areas were below 28 degrees for about 24 hours.
“There has been enough jointing now into the Panhandle that the growing point most likely experienced the cold temperatures that cause damage,” Trostle said. “Also, the strong wind speed overnight April 9-10 probably circulated the temperatures farther into the canopy, whereas on still nights with only a light breeze, this probably doesn’t happen as readily.
“Likewise, on a windy night, the low end of the field, if there is one, for example, a playa bottom or a draw, might be less likely to demonstrate injury relative to the rest of the field.”
Producers planning to attend one of the meetings should bring 10-20 samples from each field, including roots; a pocket knife or razor blade to cut samples; and field data, such as variety and planting date.
The following meetings are scheduled in the South Plains for April 17:
- 8 a.m., O’Donnell Rodeo Arena, just off U.S. Highway 87, O’Donnell. For more information call 806-561-4562.
- 11 a.m., Wilbur Ellis, 1837 West State Road 300, Levelland, TX 79336, (806) 894-9639.
- 2 p.m., Crop Protection Service office, 10 miles west of Dimmit on U.S. Highway 86, Tam Anne, 806-272-4584.
- 5 p.m., Street’s Gin, Farm-to-Market Road 145, 10 miles east of Kress in Claytonville, 806-995-3726.
Meetings scheduled for the Panhandle April 18 are:
- 8 a.m., AgriLife Extension office for Gray County, 12125 E. Frederic Ave., Pampa, 806-669-8033.
- 11 a.m., AgriLife Extension office for Ochiltree County, Ochiltree Expo Center, 402 Expo Drive, Perryton, 806-435-4501.
- 2 p.m., North Plains Research Field, off U.S. Highway 287 north of Dumas and south of Cactus at Etter, 806-366-2081.
- 5 p.m., Hartley County Community Center, U.S. Highway 385, Hartley, 806-244-4434.
Meetings on April 18 in the Rolling Plains will be:
- 8:30 a.m., AgriLife Extension office for Archer County, 512 W. Cottonwood St., Archer City. Jonathan Ramirez, AgriLife Extension demonstration technician, will do wheat sample assessment at this location. 940-574-4914.
- 9:30 a.m., Wilbarger County Exhibit Building, 2215 Harrold, Vernon, 940-552-5474.
- 1 p.m., AgriLife Extension office for Hardeman County, 409 S. Main in the Presbyterian Church Annex, Quanah, 940-663-6301.
- 3:30 p.m., Farmers Cooperative Gin, 850 U.S. Highway 83, Childress, 940-937-2351.
For more information on wheat freeze damage, go to the AgriLife Extension document “Freeze Injury on Wheat” at http://varietytesting.tamu.edu/wheat/docs/mime-4.pdf .
Additional Meeting Information
Producers are encouraged to bring 10-20 samples from each field (include roots), pocket knife or razor blade to cut samples and field data (variety, planting date, etc.)