Snapshot #7 - Wheat Growing on the Farm

It has been a little over a month since I wrote about our wheat fields.  We caught a few rains since planting and I am pleased to show it is growing.  The field looks wonderful!

Wheat up close one month after planting
The wheat we plant in Kansas is winter wheat.  It is planted in the fall and harvested the following summer.  This wheat will begin to go dormant soon as the temperatures continue to decline.  Winter wheat needs to be cold enough for a certain amount of time to flower.  This is called vernalization.  Varieties have different vernalization requirements.  Some are just days and others are weeks long.  The temperature must be around 32 - 45 degrees F for this time period.

Another angle of wheat plants
In Kansas we usually don't have any problem hitting the requirement.  The biggest problem we have is if the weather changes fast and it gets too cold.  Right now the wheat is starting to harden (getting ready for the cold winter).  If the temperature drops suddenly, the plant would be in danger of freeze damage.

View from above of wheat on 11/7/2013
 Soon the wheat will be dormant to survive the winter.  When winter is over and the temperatures start to rise, dormancy will end.  At that point the wheat will start to grow and the flowering structures begin to develop.
View of field toward Kirwin

It seems like a different world just by turning around
As you can see, the wheat fields are looking green and lush!  Now we wait for spring and hope it rains when the wheat needs it.  Stay tuned for a new update on the wheat in the future!

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