“We plan to use more N-rich strips,” Arnall said. “We want to get away from a lot of pre-plant fertilization.”

He said good fertility management would call for adding some fertilizer in anticipation of the next year. But he cautions against adding too much early-season nitrogen that might be wasted. “I like a little starter, 30 to 50 pounds per acre, but there is no reason to have 120 pounds of nitrogen under the crop.”

N-rich strips, he said, allow a producer to evaluate crop prospects during the season and add fertilizer as needed.

Mark Gregory, area Extension agronomist, discussed wheat plots with “varieties that are now available to growers.” He noted that one plot was “non-replicated and showed a great deal of difference between varieties. We have to ask if the difference was the variety or something else. That’s why replicated plots are important.”

He said identifying disease resistance is an important part of variety trials. “We are trying to identify varieties susceptible to a specific race of stripe rust,” he said.

Gregory also commented on the importance of buying certified seed and explained that the higher cost comes from the increased amount of care growers have to take to produce the seed. “They have to clean out combines, augers and storage bins,” he said. “They also have to do a lot more paperwork.” He said farmers who monocrop wheat cannot have planted another variety on the field where they plant certified seed. “Also, certified seed are under the Plant Variety Protection Act and can’t be brown-bagged.”

Farmers wishing to buy OSU wheat varieties now have to be a member of OSU Genetic Incorporated. “Members can grow seed and sell to other farmers.”