As the end of October approaches, pumpkins are abundant. Many will be participating in the fall seasonal spirit and exhibiting their Halloween festive expression by buying pumpkins for decoration, carving and maybe even for a special treat. Have you ever wondered what else you could do with …

Sunshine finally appeared late last week raising hopes that Oklahoma will dry out and get summer crop harvest and wheat pasture grazing back on track. However, at least some rain is in the forecast in the coming days. It has been an unusual fall. According to the Oklahoma Mesonet, the last 3…

U.S. beef trade continued the impressive performance of recent months in the latest monthly trade data for August.

Coyotes pose a perennial problem for ranchers, particularly in calving season. At the Coyote Trapping School in Caney, Kansas, Charlie Lee, Kansas State University wildlife damage control specialist, shared his insight and experience after years of successful trapping.

The latest Cattle on Feed report showed a Sept. 1 feedlot inventory of 11.125 million head, a record for the month since the current data series began in 1996. The Sept. 1 inventory was 105.9 percent of one year ago. A 12-month moving average of monthly feedlot inventories shows that, over t…

There appears to be considerable interest and excitement about winter wheat grazing this year. The Sept. 11 U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service Crop Progress report shows 2 percent of Oklahoma winter wheat planted, equal to the previous five-year average…

Crop harvest is an exciting time for most producers. It is often joked that planting, fertilizing and spraying are all done solely for the chance to get to ride around in the combine. Although most farmers take much pride in every farming practice they endeavor in, it’s always nice to get th…

Total beef exports were up 16.8 percent year over year in July contributing to a year-to-date increase of 15 percent for the first seven months of the year. Japan, the largest beef export market, had a monthly increase of 12.9 percent and is up 7.5 percent for the year to date. No. 2 market …

Much of the eastern half of the state is in various stages of drought and has been for a large part of the summer. In many instances in the most severely affected areas, the plants never even developed an ear and that corn has been chopped for silage.  In a recent survey of central Kansas, A…

Oklahoma producers interested in dual-purpose or forage-only wheat for winter grazing often prefer to plant winter wheat in early to mid-September if conditions permit. For grain-only, winter wheat is typically planted mid to late October. Conditions are generally favorable for early wheat p…

Wheat is considered a highly responsive crop to starter fertilizers, particularly phosphorus and nitrogen. Application of P as starter fertilizer can be an effective method for part or all the P needs. Wheat plants typically show a significant increase in fall tillers and better root develop…

The latest U.S. Department of Agriculture cattle on feed report shows the Aug. 1 feedlot inventory was 11.09 million head, up 4.6 percent from one year ago. This is the largest August on-feed total in the cattle-on-feed data series going back to 1996. The August total is down from the previo…

A very cool and wet August is just the latest turn in a rather unusual year for forage production in Oklahoma. Waves of wet and dry and warm and cool weather have made it difficult to assess forage conditions across the state. According to the Oklahoma Mesonet, every climate region of the st…

Agricultural markets are caught in a whirlwind of trade disruptions. Direct market shocks will lead to ripple effects likely to affect most agricultural markets worldwide in the coming months. It’s important to have a global perspective of major agricultural markets in order to anticipate ho…

Total beef consumption in China in 2018 is estimated at 8.5 million metric tons, second only to the U.S., according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service. On a per capita basis, this is just over 6 kilograms (carcass basis) or about 9.4 pounds per person (retai…

According to estimates from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service, China is the fourth largest beef producing country in the world behind the U.S., Brazil and the European Union. 2018 Chinese beef production is estimated at 7.3 million metric tons — 58 percent of …

In early June, I traveled some 3,500 miles across China by train. The high-speed trains provided a brief (literally) glimpse of a wide cross-section of the Chinese countryside in a large circle from Beijing to Xian to Chengdu to Shanghai and back to Beijing. The bullet trains travel at speed…

Corn is already in reproductive stages in many parts of the state, particularly in eastern Kansas. One of the main challenges presented in the last month, besides the lack of precipitation, was the high night temperatures.

I recently had an opportunity to spend several weeks in China for the first time. My trip had several objectives including teaching an agribusiness course at China Agricultural University in Beijing for about two weeks. In addition, I was able to travel for another two weeks and experience t…

For the cattle industry, July 4 not only is a celebration of our nation’s independence but also represents summer beef demand for grilled steaks and burgers. The holiday falls on Wednesday this year and doesn’t stretch into a long weekend, thereby limiting activities and most likely beef dem…

When swarms of hundreds of deer decimated a Louisiana farmer’s 406-acre corn crop, the resulting lawsuit against his landlord became a landmark case for farm lease law — and served up some hard-learned lessons on word choice and divine intervention.

The June 1 cattle on feed report showed a feedlot inventory of 11.553 million head of cattle in feedlots of more than 1,000 head capacity. This is the largest June 1 feedlot inventory in the data series that began in 1996. It is the 18th straight month of year-over-year increases and, in fac…

A large crowd turned out last Saturday for the last field day to be hosted at the Kansas State University Pecan Experiment Field near Chetopa by Bill Reid, who plans to retire next month.

As expected, supply pressures continue to build in beef markets. Beef production so far this year is up 3.6 percent on larger cattle slaughter and increased carcass weights. Year-to-date cattle slaughter is up 3.8 percent driven by increases in female slaughter. Heifer slaughter is up 8 perc…

Markets generally do a very efficient job of allocating resources and achieving optimal outcomes. However, markets sometimes fail to provide efficient and socially desirable results. Market failure is usually the result of situations where market participants do not fully recognize and incor…

The Jan. 1, 2018, beef cow herd inventory of 31.723 million head was very close to the 2009 herd size of 31.794 million head a decade earlier. However, the industry has been through quite a bit since then and some short- and long-term changes are evident in the current situation among major …

In the eastern part of the state when it comes to trees or wooded areas on agricultural land, there are usually two types of people: those that fire up a chainsaw every opportunity they have and those who see all trees as potential wildlife, primarily deer, habitat. Neither side can quite un…

The law of unintended consequences states that the actions of people, especially of government, always have effects that are unanticipated or unintended. Sulfur, one of the essential nutrients for plant growth, is an excellent example of an unintended consequence.

The heifer contribution to beef production depends on both heifer slaughter and heifer carcass weights. Heifer slaughter varies cyclically with additional heifer retention during herd expansion and reduced retention during liquidation, thus providing much of the variation in beef production …

We are nearing the end of the time period to control musk thistles effectively. Musk thistle is primarily a biennial or winter annual species. As a biennial, seed will germinate in the spring or fall and plants remain as rosettes during the entire growing season. Upon surviving a winter, pla…

U.S. beef exports for the first three months of the year are up 12.2 percent with March up 11.4 percent. So far in 2018, the U.S. has exported beef to 100 different countries. However, 85 of those countries only account for 5.9 percent of year to date beef exports. The top 15 beef export mar…

As the breeding season for spring calving herds is now underway, understanding heat stress in cattle takes on increased importance. Producers who choose to synchronize and then artificially inseminate replacement heifers or adult cows need to understand the impact that increased daytime temp…

As expected, drought conditions continued to expand last week after rains two weeks ago resulted in a brief halt to worsening drought in Oklahoma. The latest Drought Monitor indicates that 34.8 percent of Oklahoma is in D3 (Extreme) and D4 (Exceptional) drought including 10.7 million acres o…

The latest Drought Monitor shows rapid expansion of the exceptional drought (D4) area to include about 38 million acres with another 126 million acres of D3 (extreme drought) conditions. Parts of the drought region received some rain in the past 10 days; enough to slow expansion of drought c…

This may be the “Charlie Brown” of wheat growing years. A nice warm weather stretch would be equivalent to Charlie confidently approaching the football, but the Mother Nature’s Lucy pulls the football away with record cold temperatures. The question that is on most wheat producers minds is, …

The April 1 inventory of feedlots over 1,000 head capacity was 11.729 million head, up 7.4 percent from last year. This report was very close to pre-report estimates and contained no surprises. Feedlot marketings in March were 96.1 percent of last year, just about even with last year conside…

Every year at "preg" checking time, ranchers evaluate cows and make decisions as which to remove from the herd. One criteria that should be examined to cull cows is udder quality. Beef cattle producers are not as likely to think about udder health and shape as are dairy producers, but this a…

Now is an excellent time to make choices about managing weeds in pastures. Before applying herbicides for chemical control you first need to answer the question, “Why do I have weeds in my pasture?” If a management issue such as overstocking, spot grazing, low grass vigor or something else i…

In the face of growing beef production, all eyes are on beef demand in 2018. Beef production is up about 1.5 percent so far this year but total production is projected to increase roughly 5 percent year over year by the end of the year.

U.S. agricultural trade is being threatened by a storm of policy challenges and political rhetoric. As the political discussions continue, it’s important to not lose sight of the basic economic principles that are the foundation for all trade.

Producers with fall-calving herds have traditionally weaned the calves at 9 to 10 months of age. When forage growth is limited due to drought, questions arise about the feasibility of weaning the calves at an earlier date. The effect on the cow as well as weaning weight of the calf must be c…

Market quotes are powered by TradingView.com