Meeting to discuss recent damage from weather to crops slated for Rowher

by George Jared ([email protected]) 247 views 

Torrential rains caused massive damage to row crops in the Arkansas Delta region earlier this month. Expert help is on the way.

Farmers who suffered flooding and other damage from heavy rain and winds will be able to get their post-flood production questions answered by University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture agronomists and specialists at a meeting Monday (June 21) at the Dumas Community Center.

Damage from the weather was so pervasive Gov. Asa Hutchinson declared a state of emergency June 10 in response to the flooding. This declaration came after over a foot of rain fell on some communities in a 24-hour period.

The declaration will direct $100,000 from the Emergency Response Fund of the Governor’s Disaster Fund to be used at the discretion of the Director of the Division of Emergency Management.

No official estimate of the crop damage has been released.

The meeting is being organized by Rohwer Research Station Director Larry Earnest. His research station and plots saw more than 19 inches of rain in 48 hours last week.

Registration opens at 4:30 p.m. The meeting begins at 5 p.m. and dinner will be served. The Dumas Community Center is at 18 Belmont Street in Dumas.

If possible, participants are asked to RSVP by end of day Friday (June 18) for a head count. RSVP by calling the station at 870-644-3101 and contacting either Earnest at extension 222, or Tanya Hughes, extension 221.

“Last week’s rains have been devastating for our farmers,” Earnest said. “They’ve got lots of questions. They want to know what to do next; what, if anything can be salvaged, and what role crop insurance may play in this situation.”

The agenda will include the following; all are with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture unless otherwise specified.

· Welcome — Larry Earnest, director Rohwer Research Station
· Acres affected — Vic Ford, associate VP-ag/natural resources-extension
· Cotton — Bill Robertson, extension cotton agronomist.
· Soybeans — Jeremy Ross, extension soybean agronomist
· Corn — Jason Kelley, extension wheat and feed grains agronomist
· Rice — Jarrod Hardke, extension rice agronomist
· Soil fertility — Trent Roberts, associate professor – soil fertility/soil testing
· Water management — Chris Henry, associate professor/extension engineer
· Weeds — Tommy Butts, extension weed scientist
· Insects — Extension entomologists Gus Lorenz, Ben Thrash and Nick Bateman.
· Crop insurance — Adam Frazer, Delta Crop Insurance.

Following the speakers, the floor will be open for a question-and-answer period.

Plans are being made to provide a live stream of this event.

The Rohwer station is part of the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, the research arm of the Division of Agriculture.