HPPR Environment

Playa Country
8:01 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

Ogallala Aquifer Initiative: Converting to Dryland Farming

Credit Farm Foundation

Southwest Kansas producer Steve Arnold had been a big irrigator. Ten wells, numerous pivot irrigation systems and 4-wheel-drive tractors on a farm near Johnson City.

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High Plains Outdoors
8:00 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Wiper fishing during the shad spawn

Jason Barber catches a big one.
Credit Luke Clayton

Howdy Folks!

If you will take a few minutes and listen, Jason Barber will tell you the secrets of catching catfish and wipers now that spring has arrived and the water temperatures are warming up.  The warmer temperatures also mean the shad are spawning, and that's key for a successful day!   

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Prairie Ramblings
8:00 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Serendipity on Highway 183

Serendipity- The full moon setting in the west, while the sun rises in the east.
Credit justmakethecoffee.com

Some words stick in the mind, and serendipity is one those memorable terms rattling around in my cranium. In college, I hung out at a retreat called Serendipity House. I’d never heard the expression before, so after my first visit, I hit the dictionary.

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Growing on the High Plains
8:00 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

A Garden for All Seasons

High tunnel greenhouse
Barb Blevins

Skip continues the conversation with Alice Hill about gardening for all seasons.

This week we'll look at another aspect of the full circle farming concept utilized at Beaver Creek Farms and Full Circle Aquaponics, as host Alice Hill takes me through her year-round greenhouse structures.   The high tunnel and the hoop house both provide protected areas that, with proper planting and mulching methods help provide fresh vegetables throughout much of the winter.

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Playa Country
8:01 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

Ogallala Aquifer Initiative: No-till and Cover Crops Help Rainwater Basins

Playa Lake in Texas Panhandle
Credit USGS

South-central Nebraska producer John Kinley has a three-acre rainwater basin in a crop field. He talks about progressive practices such as no-till production and cover cropping.

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High Plains Outdoors
8:00 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

The secret to catfishing

Jason Barber brought in the big one!
Credit Luke Clayton

Howdy folks!

This week, I tell you what, we are going to discover the secret of reeling in those big cats!  Jason Barber shares with us how cormorants are a key to unlocking the mystery.

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Irrigation
2:00 pm
Fri March 21, 2014

Recovering from flooding, Colorado farmers hope for enough water

Construction workers rebuild a section of Highland Ditch Company’s irrigation infrastructure that was washed out in flooding near Lyons, Colorado.
Credit Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

Listen to Luke's report.

When September’s flood waters came down from the Front Range foothills, they destroyed homes and wrecked office parks. The water ruined roads, bridges and highways. The floods destroyed farms and crops, and unleashed tremendous pressure on aging irrigation infrastructure, some of which dated back to the late 1800s.

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Weather
8:00 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Kansas: The quiet start of tornado season might not last

Credit city-data.com

Tornado season has begun, and it’s off to a pretty quiet start, but weather officials say that won’t last according to a recent article in the Wichita Eagle.

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Playa Country
8:01 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Ogallala Aquifer Initiative: Good Soil Health Practices Benefit Playas

NRCS district conservationist discussing soil health improvement with producer
Credit Scott Bauer / USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Playa wetlands benefit from practices that result in good soil health. The Natural Resources Conservation Service says there are four principles to improving soil health:

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Weather
8:00 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Haboob blasts across the High Plains

NASA’s Terra satellite spied these streams of dust blowing south across Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico on March 11, 2014. Look for the streamers of pale, sand-colored stuff south of the big cloud bank.
NASA

A towering wall of dust known as a haboob pushed across a big swath of the High Plains last Tuesday said an article from Discover.

The dust streamed out of Colorado and Kansas into Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico.

Winds gusting to almost 60 miles per hour reduced visibility to almost zero in southwestern Kansas. 

High Plains Outdoors
8:00 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Bass Fishing: The nitty gritty details of deadstickin

Jason Barber
Luke Clayton

The conversation with Jason Barber continues. Learn more about deadstickin.

Howdy Folks!

I tell you what, I wish we would have had 30 minutes to talk with Jason Barber about deadstickin last week, so I've done the next best thing.  I've brought him back again this week.  

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Playa Country Episode
8:01 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Grazing Management: Patch Burning Research

Prescribed Burn
Credit Oklahoma Grazing Lands Conservation Association

This week on Playa Country, prescribed burning. Oklahoma State University's Dept. of Natural Resource Ecology & Management is researching effects of limited prescribed burning or "patch burning" to create a mosaic of patches across the landscape.

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Prairie Ramblings
8:00 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

I see the moon, and I know it by name

Credit tropicoftaurus.net

If you took an evening walk or happened to look out your window eastward last Thursday, you saw what some call the Worm Moon, a term American Indians introduced.  While these nomadic people didn’t follow a Julian calendar, they knew the importance of using seasonal lunar phases to record passing time.

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High Plains Outdoors
8:00 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

To catch a big bass this time of year, do some deadstickin

Jason Barber brings in a big one!
Credit Luke Clayton

Deadsticking is a term used for fishing a bait, usually a soft plastic but not always, very slowly during the winter months when water temperatures are at their lowest. When the water is cold, fish become lethargic. They must eat but they prefer a meal that remains somewhat stationary rather than something they must chase down. Thus the reason that 1.5 inch soft plastic shad imitations held motionless near the top of big schools of white bass provided so much excitement at Cedar Creek Lake last week.

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Growing on the High Plains
8:00 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

Winter Watering

Credit masterofhort.com

A trip to the county extension office for a botanical diagnosis of a sickly tree branch paid off with reassurance that all was well.  While I was there I was also served up a refresher course in wise watering practices for our consistently dry and thirsty area.  We reviewed some things I knew about, but am sometimes lax in following.  And I learned a thing or two about making every precious drop of moisture count, even when rainfall is skimpy.   

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Benefits of Grazing Management
8:01 pm
Mon March 3, 2014

Landowner Story: Managed Intensive Grazing on Birdwell and Clark Ranch

Credit Jeff Vanuga / USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Deborah Clark and her husband Emory apply the principles of holistic ranch management, and they use managed intensive grazing on their stocker cattle operation on 14,000 acres in north-central Texas.

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A contuning challenge for ranchers
8:00 pm
Sun March 2, 2014

Invasive weeds may look forward to climate change

Dr. Dana Blumenthal and colleagues explain their invasive weed research during a tour of The Prairie Heating and Carbon Dioxide Enrichment (PHACE) Experiment in Wyoming. In this test plot higher temperature and richer CO2 conditions are being simulated to study their effects on invasive weed growth.
Credit USDA: Prairie Heating and Carbon Dioxide Enrichment (PHACE) Experiment

Most climate models paint a bleak picture for the Great Plains a century from now: It will likely be warmer and the air will be richer with carbon dioxide. Though scientists don’t yet know how exactly the climate will change, new studies show it could be a boon to some invasive plant species.  

A growing problem

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High Plains Outdoors Episode
8:00 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Campfire Cooking: One Skillet Breakfast

 

This breakfast is easy to make, and easy to clean up.  The only pan you need is a cast iron skillet. 

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Growing on the High Plains Episode
8:00 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Valentine month concludes with the loveweed

Credit undertexasskies.blogspot.com

After a month of love in the form of hearts and roses, we'll take a final look at a plant that is actually a noxious weed. But it's long been a part of my botanical background, having been introduced to me by my hill-country grandmother, a woman who planted by the signs and believed there was power in both the light and the dark of the moon.  Today we'll look at loveweed, an ages old method of finding true love long before internet dating sites.     

Good for Livestock and Wildlife
8:01 pm
Mon February 24, 2014

Landowner Story: Deferred Grazing on Grissom Ranch

Credit Scott Bauer / USDA, NRCS

Rancher Grady Grissom discusses the lessons he's learned from deploying a deferred-rotation system of managed grazing on his 14,000-acre ranch. But he doesn't like the term "grazing system.

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High Plains Outdoors Episode
8:00 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Recollections of varmint calling for the first time

Sometimes when Larry and I get together, our conversations head toward the past... and stories of our "firsts."  Larry's asking me about the first time I went out calling.  Here's my story:

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Growing on the High Plains Episode
8:00 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

The perfect no-maintenance rose

Credit edmondhistory.org

What better way to celebrate the month of love than to turn our attention to a rose that never needs watering, weeding or feeding.  We'll look at the scientific makeup of a geological rose from Oklahoma, and then visit the heart-breaking Cherokee legend that gave the botanical name to these unusual rose rock formations.

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Good Management Practices
8:01 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

Grazing Management Benefits Livestock & Wildlife

Credit Scott Bauer / USDA, NRCS

Good grazing management is good for the livestock producer and for wildlife.  When grazing-land is healthy, cattle put on the weight, and birds benefit from healthy grassland.

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High Plains Outdoors Episode
8:00 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

Winter varmint calling

This week around the campfire, Larry Weishuhn and I were talking about winter varmint hunting.  Winter is a perfect time to get out and do some calling.  With varmints here on the High Plains, this is a true challenge.  You don't have to be a pro, even extreme novices can be successful using an electronic caller.  Now my friend Larry, you can't believe the sounds he can make with his mouth.  It is unbelievable.  He can sound like white tail deer, rabbits, but me, I have to use a call. 

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Prairie Ramblings Episode
8:00 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

There's beauty in the eye of the beholder

Credit kaweahoaks.com

Living in the same region and sharing roads, doctors, schools, and hair stylists doesn’t mean people see a common experience from the same perspective. Everything that’s happened to individuals prior to those events colors their interpretations. It’s true of two kids who grow up in the same house with the same parents but tell two different stories about their upbringing. People spin their own explanations. 

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USDA response to climate change
8:00 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Research units to help farmers respond to climate change

Looking to help farmers adapt to climate change, the U.S Department of Agriculture is setting up seven new research hubs, including a handful that will cover the Great Plains and Midwest.

The new research centers, anchored in different regions, are tasked with charting how climate change poses risks to farming, ranching and forestry. Then they are to devise strategies to adapt.

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Growing on the High Plains Episode
8:00 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Celebrate February with Dicentra

dicentra
Credit wikipedia.org

When planting season arrives this year, give yourself a belated valentine by adding dicentra spectabilis to your perennial bed.  The common name of 'bleeding heart' makes it a perfect love note, with the tiny pink or white hearts hanging from the stems, like a heart-shaped necklace.  Today our GHP story starts with an answer to the Shakespearean question, 'What's in a name?' as we look at the history of this valentine plant, and then we'll turn our attention to growing these beauties in a shady nook, something not easily found on our sunny High Plains.

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Playa Country Episode
8:01 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

Hunters & Birders, Not Mutually Exclusive

Credit U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

Hunters and birders have more in common than might be assumed. Both support the conservation of wetlands and other bird habitat. Some people even identify themselves as both a hunter and a birder, as well as a conservationist.

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High Plains Outdoors Episode
8:00 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Embarrassing hunting moment: Trapped in a blind

Let me tell you, folks, some of my favorite hunting memories are not about bringing home a trophy buck or making the record book, but about some of the mishaps that have happened along the way.  One of those times was when Larry and I were out deer hunting.  We were not having much luck, so we decided to do a little calling.  We were getting a little hungry, nothing was happening, so we decided to head back to camp to get something to eat.  I pushed on the door to open it, and the thing did NOT move.  The hasp had slipped down and locked us in!

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Growing on the High Plains Episode
8:00 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

Love in a Mist

Credit edenbrothers.com

We'll start out our valentine month with a look at an annual flower with an old-fashioned look and the great common name of Love-In-A-Mist.  I think the name fits nicely, as from a distance a mass planting of these blue, white, pink or purple flowers can look like they're floating above the ground.  The fern-like foliage adds to its buoyancy, and the whole image goes well in containers or hanging baskets.  

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