University of California Alfalfa Symposia
Alfalfa Leaf Image 2017 Western Alfalfa & Forage Symposium Alfalfa Leaf Image
Producing Quality Forages in the West
November 28th - November 30th, 2017 | Reno, NV
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The organizers of the 2017 California Alfalfa & Grains Conference wish to express their heartfelt thanks to the many sponsors of this year's conference.

  • HarvXtra Alfalfa
  • Bowles Farming Company
  • San Joaquin Valley Hay Growers
  • Western Ag Enterprises Inc.
  • America’s Alfalfa
  • Anderson Hay & Grain Co., Inc.
  • Audubon California
  • Farm Credit
  • Hay & Forage Grower
  • Penergetic Solutions
  • Progressive Forage Grower
  • Reinke
  • Sierra Testing Service
  • Toro Ag

2017 Western Alfalfa & Forage Symposium, sponsored by the The UC California Alfalfa & Forage Systems Workgroup & Cooperative Extension Services of AZ, CA, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, OR, UT, WA, WY.

Now in its 47th year, the symposium is planned each year by the California Alfalfa & Forage Systems Workgroup, made up of University of California Farm Advisors and Scientists in UC Cooperative Extension, along with grower and industry liaison members. The comprehensive conference covered many aspects of alfalfa, forage & grains management from economics to pest management, irrigation and utilization. Videos, papers, and slidesets related to the presentations have been posted below.

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Schedule of Events

DAY ONE - Tuesday, November 28th

6:30am-7:00pm Symposium and Exhibitor Registration

8:00am-5:00pm ALFALFA HAY QUALITY WORKSHOP (Workshop Chairs Shannon Mueller, University of California Cooperative Extension, Fresno, CA and Glenn Shewmaker, University of Idaho, Kimberly, ID)
View Workshop Papers (PDF) & Videos

5:30pm-7:30pm SYMPOSIUM WELCOME RECEPTION WITH EXHIBITORS Cocktails and Hors D'oevures. Exhibits open.

Day Two - Wednesday, November 29th

8:00am Welcome and Introduction William Payne, Dean, College of Agriculture, University of Nevada, Reno

Economics and Markets

Moderator: Brandon Fawaz, Fawaz Farms, Etna, CA
8:10am Current Trends in the Hay and Forage Markets Seth Hoyt, The Hoyt Report, Ione, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
8:35am Important Market Trends with California and US Dairy Markets Tiffany LaMendola, Blimling Associates, Jamestown, CA Slides (PDF)
9:00am Demographics and Long Term Outlook for Western Beef, Sheep, and Horses and their Importance for the Forage Industry Tim DelCurto, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
9:25am The Emerging Farm Bill and its Implications for Western Dairy and Forage Dan Sumner, Ag. Issues Center, University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)

9:50am DISCUSSION Video

Alfalfa Yield and Quality, Yield Gap, and Genetic Innovations

Moderator: Mark Marsalis, New Mexico State University, Los Lunas, NM
10:30am Genetics for Drought Tolerance in Alfalfa Ian Ray, NM State Univ., Las Cruces, NM Video Slides (PDF)
10:55am Alfalfa Yield Gap – How big is it and what is its economic significance? Michael Russelle, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
11:20 Alfalfa Yield Gap ‐ What is holding us back? Charlie Brummer, University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF)
11:45am DISCUSSION Video

12:10pm SYMPOSIUM LUNCH - Jim Kunh Award

Alfalfa Production and Pest Management I

Moderator: Anowar Islam, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY
1:30pm Fertilizing Alfalfa for High Yields Nick Clark, University of California Cooperative Extension, Hanford, CA Video Slides (PDF)
1:50pm Strategies for Aphid Management in Alfalfa Ayman Mostafa, Univ. of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Phoenix, AZ Video Paper (PDF)
2:10pm Controlling Alfalfa Weevils—Efficacy, Thresholds and Future Needs Rachael Long, University of California Cooperative Extension, Woodland, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
2:30pm Using Zinc Phosphide‐Coated Cabbage to Manage Belding’s Ground Squirrels in Hay Crops Roger Baldwin, University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)


Alfalfa Production and Pest Management II

Moderator: Rachael Long, University of California Cooperative Extension, Woodland, CA
3:30pm Poisonous Weeds And Toxic Factors In Hay Crops: Why You Should Worry Birgit Puschner University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
3:50pm An IPM Approach To Managing Annual Grasses In Grass Hay And Pasture Tim Prather, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
4:10pm New Herbicides for Winter Annual Weed Control in Alfalfa Earl Creech, Utah State University, Logan, UT Video Slides (PDF)

4:30pm DISCUSSION Moderated by Tim Hays, Moderator, Lancaster, CA/span> Video

DAY 3 - Thursday, November 30th


Exports, Quality, & Irrigation

Moderator: Steve Norberg, Washington State University, Pasco, WA
8:05am Reduced Lignin Alfalfa: Research Update and Implications to Harvest Management Mark Sulc, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
8:30am Hay Export Dynamics in the West Coast USA Bill Matthews, Ag Issues Center, University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
8:55am Demographics and Long Term Outlook for Western Beef, Sheep, and Horses and their Importance for the Forage Industry Alan Hallman, USDA ‐ Foreign Agricultural Service, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia Video
9:20am Benefits and Impacts of Partial Season Irrigation on Alfalfa Production Perry Cabot, Joe Brummer, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO and Neil Hansen, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)

9:45am DISCUSSION Video

10:30am Deficit Irrigation with Alfalfa: What Are the Economics? Mike Ottman, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ & Dan Putnam, University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
10:55am Principles of Drip Irrigation with Alfalfa Dan Putnam, University of California, Davis, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
11:15am What I’ve Learned from Implementing Drip Irrigation on my Farm Nate Ray, DeJager Farms, Chowchilla, CA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
11:35am Innovations in Center Pivot Irrigation with Hay Crops Troy Peters, Washington State University, Prosser, WA Video Slides (PDF) Paper (PDF)
11:55am Implementing Advances in Pivot Irrigation on my Farm Drex Gauntt, Gauntt Farms, Kennewick, WA Video Slides (PDF)

12:10pm DISCUSSION Video

CONTINUING EDUCATIONThe following CE credits have been approved. Please sign in/out of each session you attend to be eligible for credits. Sign in sheets will be provided in the meeting rooms of each qualifying session.

Certified Crop Advisor

  • 4.5 hours Soil & Water Management
  • 3.0 hours Integrated Pest Management
  • 8.5 hours Crop Management
  • 3.0 hours Professional Development

Pesticide CE Credits

  • Arizona: 2.5 hours
  • California: 4 hours
  • Oregon: 3 hours
  • Nevada: 4.5 hours
  • Montana: 4 hours
  • Idaho: 3 hours
  • Utah: 4.5 hours
  • Washington: 3.5 hours