Researchers and farmers connect

Published: Aug. 23, 2019 at 4:15 PM CDT
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Agriculture researchers connected with farmers from nine regional counties to share advice on managing crops on Friday.

“It’s some tough financial times out there for our farmers right now, but we have to learn how to be sustainable be resilient,” says extension agronomist William Birdsong.

So the annual Wiregrass Research Field Day continues to help farmers manage their crops.

“I've never seen two years in my whole lifetime that I’ve been farming that have been the same, so whatever I learned last year you can just about scratch it and start over next year,” says farmer James Harrell.

Researchers discussed regional farming issues during field tours.

“It's impossible to see everything, but we pick out a few things that we think are very pertinent,” says Larry Wells the Director of Wiregrass Research and Extension Center.

The event is strategically planned to compliment the harvest time.

“We wait as long as we can so we can show as much as we can, but we understand that the producers are going to be harvesting here in a couple of weeks, and they're not stopping their harvest to come to a field day,” says Wells.

Even with help from researchers, farmers still have to deal with the weather.

Peanut farmers need rain now but not so much later.

“We want some rain all along, but we don't want it to come in and sit on us two or three weeks and hold us out, but we're still looking for some rain right now to finish the crop out,” says Harrell.

It's also needed for cotton.

“At this point in the season, I would say that we have a respectable crop. We still need more rainfall to finish it out, and mature it for us to even say we have a good crop,” says Birdsong.

Disaster relief legislation was also discussed in regards to the devastation caused by Hurricane Michael.

“We certainly hope that some disaster legislation will be meaningful to help us to withstand the act of god that the farmers had no control over,” says Birdsong.

The field day was free of charge thanks to sponsorships by agribusinesses.

The Geneva County Young Farmers tour will be held Thursday, August 29 in Samson. Growers are encouraged to attend

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