Wichita Co. winter wheat crop outlook is favorable

WICHITA COUNTY, TX (KAUZ) - As Texoma heads deeper into fall, temperatures seem to be catching up.

October was close to average when it came to rainfall. Our Skywarn 6 Weather Team said the month was about half an inch below average. But overall it has been a very wet fall.

Despite the above average temperatures and steady rainfall local experts said as of right now the winter wheat crop in Wichita County is looking good.

"With this extra moisture, we have a lot of wheat that is tillering really well now. That's putting on a lot of tillers which translates into more wheat heads, which translates into more yield," wheat and cotton farmer Dwayne Peirce said.

County Extension Agent, David Graf said wheat farmers in the county typically plant their crop beginning in mid-October. He said the wet fall could actually be seen as a plus.

"For the year we are well ahead of our normal average rainfall and so really just being a little under our rainfall in October was probably a good thing for us because we still had so much soil moisture there," Graf said.

Peirce said while things are looking good right now he does have other concerns.

"What worries me about the moisture that we have had is we could have early season disease problems and early season insect problems," he said.

Peirce said farmers will have to scout their fields as soon as their crops come up. He said some may require some early season attention which is something farmers do not normally have to do.

"This extra moisture that we've had this year could be part of the cause of that," Peirce said.

A killing freeze would help take out an insect population that could negatively affect these crops. That is something the county has not seen just yet but could come later this week.

Samantha Forester, Newschannel 6

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