University of Arizona a dot Cooperative Extension

Alfalfa Report
Yuma County, Arizona
March 24, 2003

Yuma County Office
2200 W. 28th Street, Ste. 102
Yuma, AZ 85364
(928) 726-3904
(928) 726-8472 FAX

Production Update:
Alternatives to alfalfa: Alfalfa is the most widely adaptable and valuable forage legume grown in Arizona. Other legumes have been grown in Arizona for forage, however, but with limited success. Cowpeas and soybeans examples of warm season legumes were tried in Arizona at the turn of the century. Cowpeas are drought tolerant and soybeans are susceptible to salt and whiteflies. Cool season legumes include berseem clover, vetches, winter pea, birdsfoot trefoil, annual medics, and various clovers. The cool season legumes do not establish as quickly as cool season grasses such as oats or barley, and may be behind in growth by a few weeks to a month.

Insect Management: Egrets, Ibis, gulls, and redwing black birds are commonly seen in alfalfa fields. Birds are important predators of various insect pests in alfalfa including the very damaging granulate cutworm. Egrets, Ibis and gulls are often seen at the leading edge of irrigation water eating crickets and worms forced to move or drown. These birds feed during the day and roost at night. Therefore, they only eat the cutworms in lands where water is run during daylight hours. Black birds eat cutworms, other worm pests, and aphids on alfalfa stems.

Weed Control: Once day time temperatures reach 70oF, it is difficult to safely use the contact herbicides-Gramoxone and Buctril. These herbicides are more active when sunshine is bright and temperatures are warm. The best fit for these herbicides is during the winter when weeds are small and the crop has little foliage.

Market Summary
Off grade
Past 2 Weeks (Mar 11 - Mar 24, 2003)
Last Year (Mar 11 - Mar 24, 2002)


10 Year Summary (March 11, to March 24, 1994-2003):

10-year summary Mar 11- Mar 24, 2003)

Full Disclaimers

Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, James A. Christenson, Director Cooperative Extension, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, The University of Arizona.

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Information provided by:
Barry Tickes, Extension Agent, Yuma County
Michael Ottman, Agronomy Specialist
College of Agriculture, The University of Arizona.
Eric Natwick, UCCE Imperial County - Farm Advisor
University of California, Davis, CA.

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