Texas Organic News

Bob Whitney - Regents Fellow & Extension Organic Specialist or 979.571.2086 cell

Educational news from Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension professionals about the world of organic agriculture.

Upcoming Programs (organic and conventional)

Tuesday, January 10 – Blackland Income Growth (BIG) in Waco at the BASE. Agriculture educational seminars, equipment displays and exhibitors. Talk on organic agriculture and assorted certification programs.

Wednesday, January 18 – Western Rice Conference in El Campo, Texas at the El Campo Civic Center. Plenty of seminars on rice production including organic rice with exhibits for rice production. (Click here for an agenda)

Thursday, January 26 – Southeast Rice Symposium in Winnie, Texas at the Winnie Stowell Community Building. Again, plenty of rice production seminars and organic rice with exhibitors about rice and rice production.

Sunday, January 29 – Tuesday, January 31 – Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA) Meeting in Mesquite, TX

Saturday, February 11 – Tarrant County Farmers Market Meeting in Fort Worth. Talk about organic marketing and organic vegetable production.

Tuesday, February 21 – Soil Health Clinic (morning) in Olton, Texas. Discussion for improving soil health, measuring soil health, cover crops for soil health.

Tuesday, February 21 - Organic Crops “Get Together” 1:30 pm in Brownfield, Texas at ‘The Armory,” 101 W. Webb Street. Updates on organic crops, program and products. See program details below.

Wednesday, February 22 – Sandyland Ag Conference in Seminole, Texas.

Wednesday, February 22 – Spinach Field Day in La Pryor, Texas. A look at varieties and spinach production systems.

Organic Crops “Get Together”

There will be an Organic Crops “Get Together” on Tuesday, February 21st at “The Armory” on 101 W. Webb Street in Brownfield. Plans are to start at 1:30 pm with presentations on Organic Cotton and Peanut production in South Plains by Dylan Wann, Carol Kelly, Johnny Cason, Emi Kimura, Holly Davis, Brandi Chandler, Justin Tuggle and Bob Whitney. Sponsors will be on hand to meet growers and discuss products. The presentations will be short with plenty of time for discussion and questions. Plans are to be done by 4 pm at the latest. Make plans to attend!!

2021 USDA Survey of Organic

In December 2022 the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released the Certified Organic Survey 2021 Summary. As you can see from just one of the many charts above there is a lot of data and Texas is continuing to grow in organics. This is not a survey of every organic grower in Texas…. (Click here to see all the results)

Field Bindweed Control with a Fungus?

Is there a bioherbicide we can use in organic crop farming? Potentially yes, because over 3 decades ago some researchers found a fungus causing damage to the leaves of field bindweed – Phomopsis convolvulus. This fungus actually carries… (Click here to learn more about this bioherbicide)

Can Cover Crops Control Weeds and Save Water Too?

Because we use and need cover crops and because I give organic programs on cover crops, I try to read all the research I can and occasionally I find something that just “tickles the brain.” I accidentally came across a study done in New Mexico at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces entitled, “Fall-sown small grain cover crops for weed suppression and soil moisture management in an irrigated organic agroecosystem” (Click here to read about the study)

Peanut Seedling Disease Trial Results

This peanut seedling disease trial was established in May 2022 to simply evaluate organic seed/soil treatments at plant for any sign that they might prevent a complex of seedling diseases that affect peanut seed germination. Typically, a conventional grower has a chemical seed treatment to prevent disease, but organic growers have had very few options and so it is not unusual to be forced to replant. At $1.30 per lb. and most peanut farmers planting over 100#’s per acre, cost add up quickly!

This growing season has had strange weather and because of that the test was planted later than wanted. Both air and soil temperatures jumped significantly in May… (Click here to read results)

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Texas AgriLife Extension Service - Organic Programs · 1229 N. Hwy 281 · Stephenville, TX 76401 · USA

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