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Agricultural News

Canola Showing It's Resilience to Adverse Weather Events, Bushong Says

Fri, 26 Apr 2013 17:42:12 CDT

Canola Showing Itís Resilience to Adverse Weather Events, Bushong Says
The fall drought and spring freezes have worked in tandem to slow the progress of canola in many areas of the state. Oklahoma State Extension Canola Specialist Josh Bushong has been touring the state and assessing the damage. He spoke with Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays and said the damage is somewhat less than he expected.

"Surprisingly, it's still holding in there very well. It's been kind of a big year as far as anything we could throw at the canola, it seems like it's happened. I think still the biggest issue that's had the most impact would be last fall's drought as far as getting a good stand established."

He said the late freezes, ice storms, and hail storms have devastated the crop in some areas. In areas with moderate freezes there has been little to no damage. In other areas where we had ice actually form on the plants bending them over, Bushong says the plants seem to be holding their own.

"The plants have gone back erect more or less. We've had good pod sets since then. The plant is still going very slow compared to normal. I'd say we're about at least two weeks behind where we typically are, but we're about four weeks behind where we were last year."

He said in some areas that experienced heavy freezes we are beginning to see damage inside the canola stems and cosmetic splits outside of the stems.

"Right now, I think the plant still has the structure to keep itself standing. We probably won't see a huge impact on it, but with that hollowed out stem, the plants are still doing well and still setting pods. They may cause some issues later with lodging, but right now it still looks like they're healthy plants for the most part."

Bushong said he is most concerned about the southwestern part of the state that had the worst of the drought and then suffered a heavy freeze in March. He said the combination of dry soil and freezing temperatures compound the stress on the plants.

He said that the recent rains have really helped the canola develop good plant structure and respectable pod sets. He said yield potentials in some areas may still be good despite the effects of the weather.

You can see a series of photographs documenting the progress of this year's canola cropat the Noble County Demonstratio plot by clicking here.. You can listen to our full conversation by clicking on the LISTEN BAR below.


Josh Bushong talks to Ron Hays about the condition of this year's canola crop.
right-click to download mp3


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