Ways that alfalfa and grass-hay producers can conserve irrigation water under drought conditions will be discussed at University of Nevada Cooperative Extension workshops across the state.

Topics will include water availability, recommended irrigation practices, insurance options and an outlook on prices. Workshops will be held March 20 and April 1, 14 and 29.

“There are things producers can do in terms of irrigation methods and scheduling to maximize their crops under these conditions,” says Jay Davison. He’s an Extension alternative crops specialist who conducts research related to irrigation efficiency, as well as alternative crops that use less water.

Soil texture, water-holding capacity, irrigation scheduling and the relationship between evapotranspiration and crop yield will be some of the topics Davison will present. He’ll also tell how to determine evapotranspiration in the field, discuss plant response to drought and offer irrigation strategies that result in maximum yields with limited irrigation water.

An overview of risk-management crop insurance programs for ag producers will be provided by Staci Emm, Mineral County Extension educator. An alfalfa and grass-hay price outlook will be made by ag economist Mike Helmar, from the University’s Center for Economic Development. Local irrigation district officials and others will update producers on water availability.

The workshops will be held:

•   March 20, 6 p.m., at the Churchill County Cooperative Extension Office, Fallon, and via videoconference at the Lincoln County Cooperative Extension Office, Caliente. This session can be made available to other communities via videoconference. Call 775-945-3444, ext. 12.

•   April 1, 1 p.m., at the Eureka County Courthouse, Eureka.

•   April 14, 1 p.m., in the Walker River Paiute Tribe Learning Center, Schurz.

•   April 14, 6 p.m., at the Lyon County Cooperative Extension Office, Yerington.

•   April 29, 6 p.m., at the CVIC Hall, Minden. This session will discuss irrigation practices only, and is part of the Agriculture Innovation Series Forum, where small-acreage equipment and services will also be discussed.

To preregister, call 775-945-3444, ext. 12, or email kintzj@unce.unr.edu.

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