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This fact sheet describes recent discrepancies between SMP and Sikora buffer pH lime requirement tests for western Oregon soils and provides recommendations for what to do. Many soil testing labs in the U.S. are switching from the SMP to the Sikora buffer test for lime requirement in an effort to reduce the use of carcinogenic chemicals in the procedure. Wide-scale testing has shown good correlations between the SMP and Sikora tests, however some soils in western Oregon may not follow this pattern. Some soil testing labs serving Oregon are showing higher buffer test values from the Sikora test than the SMP test, while other labs are not reporting a difference between the two tests. Research is on-going and updated buffer pH recommendations are expected next year.
This fact sheet is designed to help guide commercial hop growers in selecting cover crops. The guide discusses benefits and considerations or cons for four different cover crop strategies: annual fall planted, annual spring planted, annual re-seeding and perennial sod. Cover crop suggestions are tailored to western Oregon climate and regional cropping practices.
Low energy precision application (LEPA) and low elevation spray application (LESA) trials in the Pacific Northwest
LEPA and LESA are alterations on a center pivot where the sprinklers are moved much closer to the ground, the spacing between sprinklers is reduced (more sprinklers), and water is emitted at very low pressures. It saves water (18%), it saves energy (less water pumped and pumped at a lower pressure), and it helps growers get better yields especially in areas where water is limiting. However, it has an increased propensity for runoff, and the sprinklers operating below the top of the canopy can require some management changes. In many cases energy savings alone can pay for the increased costs of the additional sprinklers and drop hose. However, the largest profit potential lies in the ability to get improved yields in areas that are water short or have large water losses to wind drift and evaporation.
Some farmers in the Inland Pacific Northwest have reported lower grain yield of spring cereals with no-till (NT) compared to conservation tillage (CT). A 4-year field study was conducted in a 12-inch annual precipitation zone to determine tillage method and sowing rate effects on seed-zone water, seed-zone temperature, plant stand, grain yield, grain yield components, and straw production for three spring-sown cereal species.
Presentation slides on the abbreviated history of grains.
Trial results of wheat during the "Growing Grains on a Small Farm Course".
Checklist for calibrating a traveling big gun irrigation system.
A printable checklist for calibrating a solid manure spreader wagon.