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XiteBio / 26.02.2013

For farmers, the impact of a drought is not only felt while it is happening, but also for several years after. According to Randall Miles at the University of Missouri, dry soil can take at least two years to recover to normal conditions. Randall found that soil in the Midwest was dry as deep as 5 feet in 2012. In some cases, plants had to send roots 8 feet into the soil to find moisture. The deeper the dry soil reaches, the longer it will take to recharge....

XiteBio / 15.01.2013

The arrival of winter snow generally brings a halt to field work until spring. However, if you are growing winter wheat, that does not mean that nothing is happening in the field. The presence of snow is essential for the survival of a winter wheat crop when growing in cold weather regions. An adequate layer of snow delivers two key benefits to winter wheat: it provides moisture, and it provides cold weather protection. Moisture Every 10" of snow is thought to equal roughly 1" of rainfall. The more snow there is on...

XiteBio / 31.10.2012

Many Midwest farmers choose not to use an inoculant for their soybeans. They feel, due to the high number of nitrogen fixing bacteria already in the soil, that inoculating offers little benefit. However, after the record-setting drought of 2012, they may want to reconsider. Jim Beuerlein and Harold Watters, agronomists with the Ohio State University, explain that rhizobia bacteria, the nitrogen fixers responsible for forming root nodules, prefer moist conditions with a soil temperature range of 40-80°F (4-27°C). When soils get too hot or too dry, as many...

XiteBio / 17.10.2012

2012 will be a profitable year for Canadian agriculture. That's the conclusion of a report released by the Bank of Montreal. Canadian agricultural output is expected to improve 7.5% by the end of the year when compared to 2011, growth that is largely supported by more profitable crop production. While agriculture is always vulnerable in a constantly changing economy, there are reasons to believe that this growth can be sustained: Countries with growing populations are looking for food, and see Canada as a valuable source. The needs of international markets are affecting the decisions of...