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Russ Pankonin | Johnson Publications

Western Nebraska Crop Specialist Bob Klein of North Platte talks with attendees at last week’s field day at the Stumpf Wheat Center. University Wheat Breeder Steve Baenziger, left, looks at notes before briefing the crowd on the various wheat varieties in trials at the center.

Wheat trial yields at Stumpf Center among best in state

University of Nebraska Crop Specialist Bob Klein of North Platte couldn’t be prouder of the crop research being done at the Henry J. Stumpf International Wheat Center at Grant.
    Over the first two years of wheat variety trials at the center, yields in test plots were among the top in the state.
    He told the crowd of nearly 100 people attending the Extension’s field day at the wheat center Tuesday, June 20 that yields at the center averaged 64.5 bushels/acre (bu/a).
    That figure tied with a plot trial in Furnas County. He said those results are amazing, considering the center is only in its third year of operation.
    In 2015, the center’s wheat trial yields averaged 49 bu/a with a high of 62 bu/a.
    In 2016, yields averaged 80 bu/a with a high of 91 bu/a.
    He said they achieved the highest yield ever on a plot in Furnas County last year, with a high of 107 bu/a and an average of 91 bu/a.
    Attendees at last week’s field day got an up-close look at the various wheat trials the center is conducting this year.
    Many of the varieties are in their third year of trials, along with experimental varieties being studied at the center.
    Strahinja Stepanovic, the center’s cropping specialist, said there are more than 45 varieties in this year’s yield trials. These include both university and commercial varieties from Nebraska, Kansas and Colorado.
    He estimated there are more than 1,200 individual plots, measuring five feet by 25 feet, at the center.
    He said they replicate each plot as many as five times to test each variable. These include planting date, seeding rate, fertilizer application, fungicide application for disease prevention and pre-planting seed treatment.
    Stepanovic noted the university and the center are also partners with several other seed developers on their own respective trials and wheat seed breeding.

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