Freeze Damage Showing Up in Oklahoma Wheat Fields- But Does Not Appear to be WidespreadThu, 29 Apr 2021 05:37:12 CDT
Freeze damage from the temperatures seen the week of April 19th can be found in the 2021 Oklahoma Wheat Crop- but you have to know where to look. Mike Schulte, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Wheat Commission has been out scouting and has found fields where he says the wheat he saw "has dodged the bullet" while others in low lying areas, such as the wheat seen in the photo above- has been significantly damaged.
Schulte sat down in his offices with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays on Wednesday afternoon and discussed what he has seen this week in southwest and central Oklahoma. You can hear their full conversation by clicking on the LISTEN BAR at the bottom of this story.
The wheat seen above is from north of El Reno in an area where traditionally the temperature readings from the nearby Mesonet station often will have temps several degrees below stations from locations all around it. During the most recent freeze event- Schulte tells Hays that this Mesonet station had readings in the mid twenties for up to ten hours.
The news is better from the first two Wheat Plot Tour locations in southwestern Oklahoma. Schulte participated in the Walters and Altus Replicated Plot Tours on Tuesday of this week- and found undamaged heads and a wheat crop that looks "relatively well." He adds "Overall, the crop in that area looks average to a little above average." Schulte says he saw light freeze damage in those areas but it was in fields few and far between.
The picture below is from the Walters area on Tuesday- the heads found by Schulte appear healthy.
Schulte adds that he has been in phone contact with producers in north central and northwestern Oklahoma- and that the wheat is behind normal development, which should lessen the damage from the mid April freezze.
Schulte says that we will learn a lot more about the state's wheat crop next Tuesday when scout reports will be compiled during the annual Oklahoma Grain and Feed Association Wheat Crop Tour report session. After not having a report session last year due to COVID-19 issues- the 2021 session is back on. Schulte adds that the Kansas Hard Red Winter Wheat tour is also going to happen this year- but it will be a couple of weeks later than normal- and will have scouts out in the wheat fields May 17th to the 20th.
There are two more wheat plot tours in Oklahoma this week- in Apache and Chickasha- you can look at the full schedule by clicking or tapping here.
Listen to Mike Schulte dicuss the current status of the wheat crop with Ron Hays by clicking on the LISTEN BAR below.
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