Ag research: SAREC Field Day
UW features current research at 2023
The University of Wyoming (UW) Agriculture Experiment Station near Lingle hosted a field day on Aug. 9 at the James C. Hageman Sustainable Agriculture Research and Extension Center (SAREC).
SAREC was formed in 2002 as the result of combining the Archer Center and Torrington Center.
The campus consists of 1,522 acres of dryland cropland, 349 acres of irrigated cropland, 1,880 acres of rangeland, 19 acres of irrigated organic cropland, 40 acres of dryland organic cropland, a feedlot and a livestock research laboratory.
UW ag research center showcased
Associate Professor and Wyoming State Beef Extension Specialist Steve Paisley began the field day with brief introductions followed by President of Eastern Wyoming College (EWC) Jeffry Hawes who discussed the recent partnership between SAREC and EWC.
Hawes described how the two entities are collaborating on developing a joint precision program and reiterated how curriculum development would be tied to local businesses, providing the ability to identify areas of interest supporting Goshen County.
UW College of Agriculture, Life Sciences and Natural Resources (CALSNR) Dean Barbara Rasco gave a brief overview of the merger of colleges, which took place last June. Rasco also honored Warrie Means, who retired Aug. 15 from CALSNR.
The field day tour followed as guests gathered to explore field plots, where researchers presented their work on grass and alfalfa forage, cattle and feedlot research and crop protection management.
“We have a lot of botany projects this year, which is something we haven’t had in the past,” Paisley stated. “It’s a new opportunity for us.”
After the guided tour, attendees had the opportunity to walk through demonstration orchards, visit the geodome greenhouse, view graduate students’ research poster presentations and visit various local vendors.
During the tour UW personnel noted a few new features at SAREC, which include a fruit orchard and a pollinator demonstration plot. The pollinator program is a joint research project between SAREC and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.
Paisley instructed guests to take some time to go through a self-guided tour of the orchards and raised bed pollinator program.
“We have a demonstration orchard that’s looking really good this year,” he added.
According to SAREC research scientists, the orchard was planted in the spring of 2021 to provide citizens of Wyoming the opportunity to gain hands-on experience regarding what types of fruit do well in Goshen County.
The ability to understand which tree is sustainable in the area grants individuals and producers the opportunity to increase production in specialty crops.
Various trees have been planted, including plums, peaches, cherries, currants and pears, and so far, the plum trees are doing best.
Paisley introduced and guided guests through the SAREC GrowSafe testing facility and the SAREC feedlot, which is currently evaluating bulls on a 99-day feed efficiency study where individual feed intake is measured.
Additional field speakers included Anowar Islam, a UW professor of forage agroecology, who presented on forage production.
Islam and his students are working on research which will not only improve productivity and quality but improve the persistence of alfalfa and alfalfa-grass mix.
Donna Harris, assistant professor of plant breeding based out of Sheridan, presented on bean and pea variety research trials and assisted a UW graduate student with a demonstration on the use of drones, which are being utilized in a sugarbeet trial.
Also presenting on the tour was UW’s Clint Beiermann, assistant professor of forage crop production and weed management, who led the group out into the field to investigate corn production and discuss growth rates.
The tour captured SAREC’s vision to facilitate research and education on sustainable agricultural systems, discovering and generating new knowledge to meet Wyoming’s emerging needs.
Melissa Anderson is the editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to firstname.lastname@example.org.