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​Study: Spring Heat Poses Danger to Kansas Wheat Yields

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WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A new study says spring heat poses a greater danger to winter wheat crops than early freezes in the fall. Researchers at Kansas State University examined results from experimental field trials and matched that data with weather information at those sites. The data spanned from 1985 through 2013 in 11 locations. The research found that a 1-degree increase in heat in the spring would decrease yields by 7 percent. Agricultural economist Andrew Barkley says researchers expect new wheat varieties to be more heat resistant in the future. He says that is the take-home message of this study. He says damage from hotter temperatures can be partially offset with more precipitation. Hot, dry springs would mean higher losses. The research is being published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


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