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Winter Wheat Survives the Cold

North Dakota's winter wheat crop escaped major damage from the abnormally cold weather in early April.

Initial reports indicate that North Dakota's winter wheat crop escaped major damage from the abnormally cold weather in early April, says Joel Ransom, North Dakota State University Extension Service agronomist for cereal crops.

""Though the record cold weather that passed through the state had the potential to damage winter wheat that was just starting spring growth, it appears from the reports received to date that the crop in North Dakota may have escaped widespread damage,"" Ransom says.

Bag tests conducted by Blake Vander Vorst, Ducks Unlimited agronomist, found good winter wheat survival in fields sampled in Emmons County, with early planted crops showing the best vigor.

Similarly, Kent McKay, NDSU North Central Research Extension Center area agronomist in Minot, found that survival looked good in the north-central region of the state.

Also, the vigor of winter wheat plants at research plots near Prosper looked good, Ransom says.

""There was some obvious damage in parts of the field where water may have accumulated, but overall the plants seemed to be in pretty good shape,"" he says. ""We are extremely lucky that the winter wheat was still small when the cold weather passed through the state.

""The winter wheat damage caused by this cold weather in other parts of the U.S. has been significant,"" Ransom says. ""For fields that are found to have adequate stands, now is the time to start thinking about applying nitrogen. If you didn't get your nitrogen on in the fall, applying it early in the spring produces the best response.""


NDSU Agriculture Communication

Source:Joel Ransom, (701) 231-7405, joel.ransom@ndsu.edu
Editor:Rich Mattern, (701) 231-6136, richard.mattern@ndsu.edu
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