Source: AgriLife Today
With the start of the fall wheat planting season only days away, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service experts warn of a looming Hessian fly problem facing the future crop in South, West Central Texas wheat crop. “Warm winters, higher rainfall in recent years, along with the increased use of minimum tillage farming practices and the lack of controlling volunteer wheat sprouting from grain dropped from a previous crop, are all contributing to the problem,” said Dr. Allen Knutson, AgriLife Extension entomologist at Dallas.
Hessian fly larvae feed on the wheat stem beneath the leaf sheath consuming the resulting plant sap that bleeds from the injured stem. “Infestations stunt the plant’s growth in the fall, potentially limiting its forage production for livestock,” Dr. David Drake, AgriLife Extension agronomist at San Angelo said. “Infestations in the spring stunt tiller growth, reducing grain yields and can cause lodging or stem breakage, making it difficult or impossible to harvest.”
Learn more about Hessian Fly Management in the Texas Row Crops Newsletter
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