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Environment and Weather

Invasive Weed Increasingly Taking Hold in Kansas

Judging by the number of phone calls he receives, Dallas Peterson is very popular this time of year.

The typical topic is weeds – something Peterson, a Kansas State University agronomist, knows well.

7/21/2014 8:00:00 AM


There has been a lot of talk about the unusually cool weather in Kansas this month—but K-State climatologist Mary Knapp says we were a long ways off from record-setting temperatures.

7/17/2014 7:00:00 PM

MUD STORMS? Play Audio

Many of us have seen unusual weather combinations, such as winter storms that combine rain, sleet and snow. K-State climatologist Mary Knapp says there’s another rare occurrence during warmer months to look out for.

7/17/2014 7:00:00 PM

The Kansas Weather Week Ahead... Play Audio

K-State climatologist Mary Knapp reports on the Kansas agricultural weather scene.

7/17/2014 7:00:00 PM


The climate element most often associated with the state of Kansas is the wind. K-State climatologist Mary Knapp offers this brief refresher on common wind terms.

7/17/2014 7:00:00 PM

Using Cover Crops... Play Audio

K-State soil management specialist DeAnn Presley talks about cover crop options and management for Kansas conditions, and how producers can overcome challenges to raising various cover crops...she presented this information at an in-service field day for agribusiness retailers hosted by K-State last week.

7/14/2014 7:00:00 PM


Heat lightning has often been thought to be a predictor of severe weather, but K-State climatologist Mary Knapp says this weather phenomenon doesn't carry a guarantee.

7/10/2014 7:00:00 PM


With the nearest coast line, along the Gulf of Mexico, about a thousand miles away, Kansas residents never have to worry about hurricane activity, right?  K-State climatologist Mary Knapp tells us why that isn't necessarily the case.

7/10/2014 7:00:00 PM


Often for well-meaning purposes, several non-native, or exotic, grass species have been introduced in the Great Plains region.  Now, those species have encroached on native grasslands, and that could become a major problem for several wildlife species residing in those areas.  This week, K-State wildlife specialist Charlie Lee looks at a new study of the situation.

7/10/2014 7:00:00 PM


As hot as it may be right now, chances are it needs to get a lot hotter to even approach the state record for the hottest day in Kansas.  K-State climatologist Mary Knapp takes us back to that searing day in Kansas weather history.

7/10/2014 7:00:00 PM

The Kansas Weather Week Ahead... Play Audio

K-State climatologist Mary Knapp reports on the Kansas agricultural weather scene.

7/10/2014 7:00:00 PM

Kansas Water Use Vision Plan... Play Audio

The chief of policy and planning with the Kansas Water Office, Susan Metzger, discusses the draft proposal for the state's 50-year water use vision plan that's being presented to agricultural and other stakeholder groups at a series of meetings around Kansas this week...she talks about various aspects of that preliminary plan, such as expanding local enhanced management areas for water use and promoting research into more water-thrifty cropping systems.

7/9/2014 7:00:00 PM

Controlling Invasive Trees in Grasslands... Play Audio

K-State range and pasture management specialist Walt Fick looks at the latest recommendations for controlling invasive trees in grasslands, notably honeylocust , hedge, cottonwood and elm...he draws from the latest K-State field trials of foliar, basal bark and cut-stump treatments that work against these and other aggressive species.

7/8/2014 7:00:00 PM

Invasive Grass Species Gaining Ground... Play Audio

K-State wildlife specialist Charlie Lee reports discusses a new study of exotic grass species, primarily old world bluestem, encroaching on native grasslands, and the ensuing impact on prairie wildlife.

7/7/2014 7:00:00 PM


The words "fog," "haze," and "mist" are sometimes used interchangeably, but K-State climatologist Mary Knapp says that from the view of science, the three terms define three very distinct conditions.

7/2/2014 7:00:00 PM


A little more than 60 years ago, some of the worst flooding recorded in state history occurred in and around the Kansas River Valley.  K-State climatologist Mary Knapp has more details.

7/2/2014 7:00:00 PM

DOG DAYS Play Audio

The hottest part of the summer has often been referred to as the "dog days of summer."  K-State climatologist Mary Knapp takes us back to ancient times, to seek out the origins of this familiar phrase.

7/2/2014 7:00:00 PM

Herbicide-Resistant Weed Threatens No-Till Farming

Known by the name tumbleweed, it’s been romanticized in story and song. And when it’s called summer-cypress, it sounds downright exotic. No matter what you call it, the weed kochia, cuts into crop yields and farmers’ profits. And it’s become harder to control.
6/27/2014 8:00:00 AM

The Kansas Weather Week Ahead... Play Audio

K-State climatologist Mary Knapp reports on the Kansas agricultural weather scene.

6/26/2014 7:00:00 PM


Still more information has come out about the pasture management approach called “patch burning”…that is, burning only a portion of a pasture every year, instead of the whole pasture annually.  This system has proven very beneficial to grassland birds and other wildlife.  However, there’s always been a question of whether cattle performance on patch-burned grasses holds up sufficiently.  This week, K-State wildlife specialist Charlie Lee talks about a new study that sheds light on that.

6/25/2014 7:00:00 PM


If you are planning to be outdoors in the coming weeks and months, a couple of experts are warning to be extra cautious when it comes to ticks.  In fact, in some areas of the state tick exposure can truly be massive, with the possibility of encountering dozens, even hundreds of the little pests.  And these are pests that pose very real dangers for humans and animals, alike.

6/25/2014 7:00:00 PM

Flooded Fields... Play Audio

K-State crop production specialist Ignacio Ciampitti looks at how well corn and soybean stands can bounce back from overly-saturated or flooded field conditions...information that could influence a grower's crop management decisions from here forward.

6/19/2014 7:00:00 PM


The summer solstice is just around the corner.  K-State climatologist Mary Knapp has the details on what this means for Kansas residents, as well as people living much closer to the Arctic Circle.

6/12/2014 7:00:00 PM

The Kansas Weather Week Ahead... Play Audio

K-State climatologist Mary Knapp reports on the Kansas agricultural weather scene.

6/12/2014 7:00:00 PM


There is a saying that “if it rains bubbles, it will rain for 3 days.”  What’s the reasoning behind the saying?  K-State climatologist Mary Knapp tells us about the conditions that cause those bubbles…and what they might mean.

6/12/2014 7:00:00 PM

BOW ECHO.... Play Audio

When meteorologists are discussing severe storm radar images, they sometimes mention a feature called a “bow echo.” K-State climatologist Mary Knapp has more on this phenomenon, and what it might portend.

6/12/2014 7:00:00 PM


As the summer progresses, more aquatic plant growth is evident on and around farm ponds.  That’s when pond owners bring their questions about controlling those “weeds” to K-State wildlife specialist Charlie Lee.  He stresses that some plant growth is a beneficial part of the pond’s biology.  He talks about managing those aquatic weeds.

6/12/2014 7:00:00 PM

Late Spring Rains Welcome, But Drought Persists Across Much of Kansas

Take one long drought that settled over Kansas for years. Add several inches of rain over a few short weeks. The result is the farmer’s version of feast or famine.

6/11/2014 8:00:00 AM

Controlling Vegetation in Farm Ponds... Play Audio

K-State wildlife specialist Charlie Lee talks about means of controlling vegetation in farm ponds, and to what extent one truly needs to go about that.

6/9/2014 7:00:00 PM

Horticulturist Gives Tips for Dealing with Storm-Damaged Trees, Gardens

A late-spring stretch of stormy weather may mean damaged trees and gardens for homeowners. Kansas State University horticulturist Ward Upham provided tips for pruning damaged trees and assessing and helping garden plants survive the weather.
6/5/2014 8:00:00 AM