It Was a Great Day To Be in Wheat Fields of Kansas

Day starts out cool, but sunshine and wind dominate hours of checking out condition of Kansas wheat

My first thought when we pulled over for the first field stop of the day on the Kansas Hard Red Winter Wheat Tour Wednesday was "we're gonna get wet."

I was sure the field near Colby would be dew-drenched after a night when temperatures dropped nerve-jarringly close to freezing.

But the grass in the road ditch and the wheat in the field were dry -- testimony to the famous low humidity of the High Plains.

The day progressed to one of sunshine and wind that was pretty much picture-perfect as we checked more fields, took a detour to visit Ehmke Seed Farms in Lane County (look for a story on the 25,000-bushel scale house in the June Kansas Farmer), and visit some more fields before hitting Great Bend about noon.

That's where I left the tour to head to the 3i Show, which continues through Friday.

During the course of a day and a half with the tour, I saw some pretty good wheat and a few fields with challenges. There is a lot of late-planted wheat, thanks to last fall's endless harvest, and much of it won't make the yields it would have if it had gotten an earlier start.

There are some weed pressure problems, especially with mustard in central Kansas, that will create a special headache at harvest and probably rob some yields as well.

But overall, if Mother Nature cooperates, this is going to be a strong, rewarding harvest season in Kansas.

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