Drought issues will be part of University of California desert field day

Apr 9, 2015

An update on the California drought tops the agenda for the Agronomic Crops and Water Conservation Field Day, 7 a.m. to 12 noon April 16 at the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources research and extension center in the Imperial Valley.

Presentations will be made at six stops on a tour of the UC Desert Research and Extension Center, 1004 E. Holton Rd., Holtville. Visitors will see alfalfa produced with subsurface irrigation, an approach that cuts water use by reducing evaporation from the soil surface.

Research results from variety trials and deficit irrigation studies will be presented. In deficit irrigation, water is withheld at specific times during the crop's development so that yield loss is minimized despite water cutbacks.

In addition to alfalfa research, the field day includes presentations on oil crops, bell peppers, sugarbeets, giant king grass and sorghum. Irrigation technology and insect control will also be discussed.

The complete agenda is posted online on the UC Alfalfa and Forage News Blog. The event is free and includes lunch courtesy of mOasis, a company that produces a product designed to optimize water usage in agriculture. Continuing education credit is available for certified crop advisers and pest control advisers.

The field day is sponsored by UC Cooperative Extension in Imperial County and the California Department of Water Resources. To reserve lunch or for more information, email Kahled Bali at kmbali@ucanr.edu or Oli Bachie at obachie@ucanr.edu.

An initiative to improve California water quality, quantity and security is part of the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources Strategic Vision 2025.

By Jeannette E. Warnert
Author - Communications Specialist