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The latest in agricultural insights from a USDA-ARS and University sponsored long-term agroecological research site site. We specialize in the dryland farming region of the inland pacific northwest.

If you have a hunch that this has been a very dry spring, then we may have some data to back you up. According to Bob Barry, a technician for CAF, "we are having the driest March + April + May since 1930, and, possibly since 1893." The total precipitation for all of March through May was only 1.2 inches; a far bit less than our average 5.3 inches (Figure 1). Figure 1: March, ...

At the Palouse Conservation Field Station, located near Pullman, WA, plot studies with treatments that include multiple tillage operations and no residue exhibited large losses of soil and water in surface runoff, whereas direct-seed treatments have shown negligible runoff and erosion. Direct seeding reduces energy costs, loss of precipitation to runoff, and provides off-site ...

(Part 1 of 2) The greater Palouse Region is unique in many ways. The landscapes and average rainfall vary greatly across the area. There are many a day out in the field where one of us will say, “well if it was flat, we could do this…”. Farming in this region does not benefit from any flat fields worth mentioning, and the CAF LTAR site is no exception. Historically, this has p ...

We are excited to announce that four Scientist positions are currently being advertised at usajobs.gov. Cropping Systems Agronomist/Ecologist (Research Agronomist/Research Ecologist) The goal of the research, within an interdisciplinary team, is to develop integrated and economically viable cropping systems that mitigate and adapt to climate change, reduce pest infestations, ...

Bryan Carlson presented during the WSU Crop and Soils Sciences Seminar series. The title of his talk was "Managing Agroecological Data: Challenges and Solutions from a Member of the Long-Term Agroecological Research Network". Although the presentation was not recorded, his slides can be found here:   ...

As more data begins to show up on the website (http://www.cafltar.org/data/) and with the reformatting of the Eddy Covariance Flux Tower Data dashboard, it behooves us to take a minute to explain the data being displayed and its potential usage from a researcher’s perspective. Today, the core meteorology data. The “research-grade” data and instruments will be presented in subse ...

Given the sudden onset of some rather chilly (and snowy) weather; I thought it would be worth taking a quick look at how early Pullman experiences freezing temperatures. There are two metrics I’ll be looking at: the first day after July 1 where we record a minimum daily temperature (TMIN) below freezing and the first day after July 1 we experience a maximum daily temperature be ...

With harvest season comes interesting work at the Cook Agronomy Farm. To illustrate, here's a fun image by Larry McGrew of one of our combines after the changing of the concave grate and upper sieve from 16 mm wheat concave and sieve to a 6 mm concave grate and sieve for millet and canola. ...

David Huggins, our research leader, was asked to give a presentation about CAF during a recent Long-Term Agroecological Research network meeting. You can view a recording below: (click here if the below video does not play) ...

I've found that, sometimes, the work that we do here at the Cook Agronomy Farm, well it may take a very long time to see the power of it, if at all. Sometimes, it can be a little discouraging in fact. The Palouse Conservation Field Station has been collecting Acid Rain data since August 20, 1985. Our own Bob Barry has been doing it since 1995. For those of you that ran out of f ...