February 4, 2002

It is time to request Cotton, Corn, Grain Sorghum, Forage Sorghum and other seed for 2002 result demonstrations. Please call or send an e-mail indicating your interest, I will get in touch with you and develop plot plans. The cooperating companies will be contacted in the near future.


The ryegrass control demonstration established in Brown County had a new flush of weeds emerge after a rain. The newly emerged weeds will make it difficult to determine the level of control achieved by the herbicides applied.

I have seen a lot of fields that look like they are short on Nitrogen. Wheat producers should consider making a fertilizer application as soon as soil temperatures increase. Between February 15 and March 15 the wheat will reach a stage of growth where nutrients and water uptake will increase significantly. If producers intend to get the most from the dollars invested on fertilizer they need to apply nutrients soon. Soil nutrient levels will need to be at a high level when the formation of the head occurs. It is important to have the soil nutrient level high when wheat is developing spikelets (shortly before rapid spring growth begins). If the head can be found above the soil surface the producer has lost the opportunity to impact the number of spikelets per head and the number of seeds per spikelet. Source of nitrogen has little to do with yield response. Apply the fertilizer that can be most efficiently and economically applied. To reduce leaf burn with high rates of liquid applicator, consider using dribble nozzles.


Due to practices used by several of the larger cottonseed companies, the way we design and conduct tests have changed. I still attempt to include the varieties that the producer wants and varieties that preform well in the county. However, there are 10 to 20 new varieties being introduced each year. Our main thrust is to eliminate varieties that don't preform before they make it into large scale production. To do this we have to put varieties into a wide range of tests. We are serving our producers well if we can identify what genetically superior lines are available and what their growth and development traits are. Contact me soon and let's design your 2002 Result Demonstrations.

The cotton producers that like to plant in marginal soil temperatures should plant cottonseed with a cool-warm vigor index above 155. Both Delta and Pineland Seed Company and Paymaster Seed Company conduct a cool germination test and a warm germination test on every seed lot to be sold. Producers can request a copy of that information and by combining the numbers obtained from both tests determine the cool-warm vigor index for the seed lot. Only those varieties with a high vigor index (above 155) should be planted when cool soil temperatures exist at planting time.

Grain Sorghum

Grain sorghum is grown on about 225,000 acres in West Central Texas. Soils suitable for the crop range from loamy sands to clay. A publication entitled "Grain Sorghum Production in West Central Texas" has recently been updated and the information can be viewed in two formats HTML or PDF (5,677,706 bytes).


The current contract on Sesame is $0.22 to $0.23 per pound. Contracts will be offered to previous growers first and then opened up to new growers--currently contracts are available. For information about sesame production refer to the following URL http://sanangelo.tamu.edu/agronomy/factshet/sesame.htm.

Pesticide Recertification Training

On Monday February 11, there will be a training conducted at Abilene for producers needing to obtain a Private Applicators License. For more details and to register for the meeting call Gary Bomar at (915) 672-6048.

Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) will be offered to TDA license holders who attend the educational sections of the West Texas Farm & Ranch Show (Abilene, Texas) on February 19 & 20, 2002. The educational meeting scheduled the afternoon of February 19 will be worth 3 CEUs (1 IPM, 1 L&R, 1 General). On the morning of February 20, 3 CEUs (1 IPM, 2 General); the afternoon of February 20, 3 CEUs (1 IPM, 2 General). For additional information contact Gary Bomar at (915) 672-6048.

Don't forget that your TDA pesticide applicators license will expire the end of February. If you have not gotten your paperwork for renewal you may want to contact the TDA.

Master Gardeners

The information on soil and soil fertility that I have been presenting at the meetings is posted under "WWW Presentations" "WWW Presentations"--Master Gardner Program on Soil and Soil Fertility--2002.

Monthly Calendar


February 4, Dist. 7 Headquarters, Office Conference
February 14, Tom Green County, Master Gardener Program
February 15, Tom Green County, Professional Ag Workers
February 19 & 20, Taylor County, West Texas Farm & Ranch Show
February 22, REMINDER--4-H Scholarship Applications Due


March 1, Dist. 7 Headquarters, Southern Rolling Plains Gin Delegate meeting
March 4, Dist. 7 Headquarters, Office Conference
March 12, Runnels County, Runnels County Ag Day
March 15, Tom Green County, Professional Ag Workers
March 19, San Saba County, Master Gardener Program
March 26, Brown County, Brown County Ag Day
March 28, Burnett County, Master Gardener Program


Billy E. Warrick
Extension Agronomist
Texas Cooperative Extension
Texas A&M University System