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Ag News and Views: March 2008

Compost: There's More to It than Meets the Eye

I've fielded many questions pertaining to composts and composting over the years. The demand for information on these topics has never been greater than today.

Dormant Native Prairie Grasses - Benefit or Hazard?

The presence of native grasses in a plant community is a good indicator that the pasture has not been overutilized and that the ecosystem is functioning properly. But what if you or your neighbor has decided to leave native grasses standing over the winter? Do these dry, native grass stands present an unnecessary fire hazard?

Hold On To Your Grass

The growing season of 2007 brought much needed range recovery in many areas of the country. To characterize the improvement of some rangeland from poor to very good within a single growing season would be an understatement in many cases. The amount and timing of the rainfall in 2007 was very unusual and very infrequent for most areas.

Sulfur Fertilizer - It Depends

In a time of record high fertilizer and commodity prices, should you apply sulfur (S) fertilizer? Well, an economist would say, "It depends." As an agronomist, I would have to agree with them. Some critical factors for applying S fertilizer are S soil test level, soil type, yield goal for the crop, amount of nitrogen fertilizer being applied and the amount of S obtained from rain, irrigation and other sources.

The Importance of the Breeding Soundness Exam

Cattle producers should seriously consider getting a breeding soundness exam. Before you jump to conclusions, let me explain!

The Message Behind the Jan. 1, 2008 Cattle Inventory

The highly anticipated cattle inventory report has been released for 2008. The numbers reflect decisions made by individual ranchers throughout 2007 and the previous couple of years.

Tools of the Trade - Basic Requirements for Prescribed Burns

As part of the prescribed burn planning process, managers should secure the appropriate equipment.