Strong crowd attends Ag conference

January 22, 2018

The Annual South Plains Ag Conference was held on Thursday at the 380 Events Center at Reddy Vineyard on Tahoka Road. Around 80 producers registered and attended. With vendors and those unregistered guests, that number was likely over 100. A great crowd.

This conference is an important meeting for farmers at this time of the year as they are beginning to make plans for the coming crop year. Lots of great information was delivered to participants, as well as the all important CEU’s necessary for keeping their applicators licenses. Also, as a part of the meeting, the mandatory training for using dicamba and 2,4-D was held. This dicamba and auxin-specific training comes from new regulations handed down this year due to problems in some areas with drift damage from these chemicals.

Record keeping is a must for applicators of these products and records must be kept for two years. Application rates must be adhered to. Wind speed must be between 3-10 mph and spraying must not be done during a temperature inversion.

Approved nozzles must be used and only approved tank mix partners should be used. Do not exceed a ground speed of 15 mph while applying these chemicals.

Do not apply when the wind is blowing near susceptible crops. Spray boom height must not exceed 24 inches above the target canopy.

There are other rules to follow, but most producers agree all these rules are simply common sense practices and should not be a problem for anyone to follow.

Speakers for the day included Dr. Jason Woodward who spoke on creating an integrated disease management plan for cotton and peanuts. He gave many examples of disease specific products available and gave an overview of seeds modified specifically for certain diseases and pest issues.

Dr. John Robinson gave the market outlook. He stated that grain consumption in the world is increasing at the present time and the world’s corn supplies are low. At the same time, wheat supplies remain high. Cotton prices did go up a bit recently, but it is too soon to tell if that is a lasting trend or just a product of the market at that time.

Dr. Peter Dotray gave a review of using auxin herbicides and the precautions necessary for their safe and practical use.

Dr. Seth Byrd talked with producers regarding cotton pre-plant decisions and what to consider as we approach another crop year.

Dr. Stephen King spoke about the marketing of specialty crops. This is important as many farmers are looking to diversify and find other ways to make farming more profitable in these days when the  market is unsteady and a new Farm Bill is being debated.

Dr. Katie Lewis gave an overview of soil fertility and cover crops and the benefits of cover crops as a part of your program.

Tyler Mays finished the day with his expertise as the Texas AgriLife Extension Agent, IPM for the area to discuss insect management practices in cotton, peanuts, corn and grain sorghum. Tyler has much to offer producers in helping to control pests in their crops.

Also participating in the day’s activities were Texas Peanut Producers, Texas Wheat Producers, Plains Cotton Growers and USDA-NRCS.

Sponsors for the event included Terry County Tractor, BE Implement, Meadow Farmers Co-op Gin, PhytoGen, Americot and NexGen, Brownfield Seed and Delinting, Tri-Star Chemical, Syngenta, Windmark Crop Insurance, Texas Corn Producers, South Plains UWCD, Gowan, First Bank and Trust and Brownfield Farmers Co-op.

The event was sponsored by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension.

The meal was catered by Serendipity.

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Category: Updates