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Quay County Extension offers free wheat production workshop

TUCUMCARI, N.M. - The Quay County Cooperative Extension Office is offering a free workshop on Sept. 8 to help area producers grow healthy wheat crops.

The workshop targets small-grain feed producers and dry-land producers in Quay, Curry and Roosevelt counties.

"Small-grain crops are a big agricultural commodity in our area," said Tom Dominguez, New Mexico State University Extension agricultural agent for Quay County. "We want to do everything we can to help the producers grow the best possible crop."

Discussions at the workshop will cover seed quality treatments and planting, soil fertility and soil properties, variety trials, and grazing management and control of bindweed.

The need for a workshop came from the producers, Dominguez said, as a way to help them determine which small-grain varieties and soil types best suit their requirements and also how to meet different challenges when growing wheat. The workshop is part of NMSU's continuing outreach efforts to help educate and improve the lives of citizens in New Mexico.

Weather conditions and moisture are the biggest problems producers face, Dominguez said. Early cold spells or late winters can trick a seed into growing too soon or too late, resulting in a damaged crop. Producers also have to deal with aphid damage.

The topics covered in the workshop will be revisited periodically with producers to see how they are progressing.

"We'll come back in the spring and have another wheat production workshop to see how the producers did with their crops," Dominguez said.

Sign-in for the workshop starts at 8 a.m. at the Forrest Fire Station.

Mark Marsalis, an agronomist with NMSU's Agricultural Science Center at Clovis, will speak first on seed quality treatments and planting.

Rudy Garcia, a state agronomist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service, will talk on soil fertility and properties.

Brent Bean, with the Texas AgriLife Extension Service, will discuss variety trials.

Both Marsalis and Leonard Lauriault, an agronomist with NMSU's Agricultural Science Center at Tucumcari, will give information on grazing management and bindweed control.

The workshop is scheduled to finish at noon.

Continuing Education Units through the New Mexico Department of Agriculture will be offered.

For more information, call Dominguez at the Extension office at (575) 461-0562.