May 13, 2022

Wheat feeling strain from weather

Posted May 13, 2022 8:15 AM

Hutch Post

HARPER, Kan. — The Kansas Wheat Harvest is fast approaching with cutting expected in about four to six weeks, depending on where you are in Kansas.

This year's crop has taken a beating because of dry conditions throughout the winter and spring, especially in western Kansas.

“We actually had our wheat plot tour today (Thursday) and the specialist from K-State was here,” Carr said. “In two weeks we went from just starting to head, to fully heading out and it’s been through flowering.”

While that’s progress, the hot weather may keep that head from bringing its full potential.

“There’s a berry in there,” Carr said. “It’s filling and it’s not quite fully developed, I’m saying it's about 90% developed. I don’t know that our yield potential is what it was.”

While the heat and dry weather has played a major part in a lower harvest forecast for Kansas, Carr says the wheat is also being affected by other pressure.

“We had some insect pressure or we had some mite pressure that did some damage that the wheat wasn’t able to grow out of,” Carr said. “So we have a decreased opportunity there as well.”

Carr says that she isn’t completely sure that the recent rain will increase yield numbers for south-central Kansas. Right now, the wheat is standing about 12-14 inches shorter than normal because of the dry conditions.

“Countywide no, field-to-field difference, yes, and that will depend on when it was planted and what stage it was in. We had a little bit of fall moisture up to October,” Carr said. “I don't think that the rains we had are going to make a major difference.”

Carr says, if all goes as planned, cutting should begin along the Oklahoma border around June 12.

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