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Wheat & Small Grains Emily Smudde

Feet on the ground

May 2014, Wheatlife by Trista Crossley The proof is often said to be in the pudding, but for wheat farmers, it’s what’s growing out of the soil that matters. That’s why there’s no substitute for the field days and plot tours that allow growers to get up close and personal with new varieties and the breeders responsible for their development. » More ...

After Egypt

April 2014, Wheatlife by Scott Yates A dozen years ago when Russia and other “Black Sea” countries began selling large quantities of wheat into the Egyptian market, there was much hand-wringing across U.S. farm country. After all, Egypt was and remains the world’s largest wheat importer, taking about 10 million metric tons of the grain a year. » More ...

WSU Extension enters small grains future

March 2014, Wheatlife by Scott Yates Eastern Washington wheat farmers who stood at railway sidings 100 years ago listening to Washington State University (WSU) educators conduct seminars from the back of flatbed rail cars wouldn’t recognize the school’s latest delivery system, but the goal is the same. » More ...

Flying under the radar

February 2014, Wheatlife by Scott Yates Beginning in 2009 with the publication of the “G-Free Diet” by Elisabeth Hasselbeck and continuing with the 2011 release of “Wheat Belly” by William Davis and 2013’s “Grain Brain” by David Perlmutter, the wheat industry has faced a slew of challenges. But Adams sees light at the end of the tunnel » More ...

Washington Wheat Production

Wheat & Barley Production in Washington

For decades Washington has been known throughout the world as the home of high quality soft white and club wheat production. Washington farmers also raise superb hard red winter, hard white, hard red spring wheat, and barley.

In 2013 there were nearly 2.2 million acres of wheat harvested in the state of Washington, yielding more than 144 million bushels, and barley was harvested on 185 thousand acres for a total production of 13.3 million bushels.

Winter Wheat

Spring Wheat

Soft White



Hard White



Hard Red



Total 1.66 million acres (114.5 million bushels) 455 thousand acres (21.8 million bushels)


This data was provided by the United States Department of Agriculture National Agriculture Statistics Service.

Weed Identification Services

The WSU Small Grains team provides a weed identification service where your specimens from your small grains field may be identified by a professional weed science Extension specialist. There is no charge. Weeds are identified by flowers and fruits/seeds. Leaves, stems, buds, and roots may also aid in identification. Digital Identification Method: Digital images may… » More ...

Mayweed Chamomile

Rusty Russell @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database
Rusty Russell @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

Also Known As

Dog Fennel, Stinkweed


Mayweed Chamomile, Anthemis cotula L., is native to the Mediterranean region, but has been widely introduced as a weed in the temperate zones. In 1995, it could be found in almost all of the lower 48 states.

Mayweed is an annual bushy, ill-scented herb; however, mayweed is highly attractive to ladybird beetles that feed on aphids. The plant grows from ½ to 2 feet tall. Mayweed can be found in flower from May to September but the main flowering period is June to July. The flowers are white, commonly 12, and up to ½ inch long.The flowers are pollinated by insects, mainly flies. Mayweed chamomile is potentially allelopathic to certain forage species.

Mayweed chamomile reproduces by seeds. Plants of average size are capable of producing from 5000 to 17,000 seeds. This plant is a weed of disturbed soils and may be an indicated of loamy soils. Seeds germinate mainly in the autumn and spring, but some germination can occur throughout the year. Seeds can remain over 50% viable in the soil for more than 11 years.

Mayweed chamomile is frost-hardy at the rosette stage and may grow as a winter annual. It is moderately drought-resistant, and summer drought may restrict the size of the plant, but does not prevent seed development. Once the mayweed becomes established, eradication is impossible. Mayweed chamomile is a serious problem in cereal crops, waste areas, pastures, and along roadsides. Contact with mayweed can cause skin rashes and irritation to the mucous membranes of livestock.

Control Methods

Combinations of rotation grazing and herbicides treatments are the best methods of successful control of mayweed chamomile in pastures.

It is most important to prevent the production and spread of mayweed chamomile seed. Seed is dispersed by water in ditches and streams, in contaminated crop seed, and by animals or equipment. Prevent seed production whenever possible; sow clean seed, manage animal movement to avoid infested areas, and clean equipment whenever it is moved from infested to uninfested areas. Agricultural seed, hay, and livestock feeds may become contaminated with mayweed chamomile seed. Always select and use certified weed-free forage, feed, and seed to prevent reinfestation of an area. Quarantine livestock known to have been in areas infested with mayweed chamomile. It may be necessary to clean the animals’ coats before they are moved to un-infested land.

R.A. Howard @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database
R.A. Howard @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

Mechanical Control: Small infestations can be eliminated by hand pulling and digging, but this is not practical for large infestations. Hand pulling mayweed chamomile before it goes to seed will prevent new infestations. Cultivation is most successful if done when the plant is in the seedling stage, prior to seed set. Cultivation should be performed as often as necessary to control this weed. Mowing mayweed chamomile is not effective. If mowed too early, the plant grows more prostrate and can produce flowers below the height of a mower blade.

Biological Control: There are currently no biological control methods available for mayweed chamomile. Manage livestock grazing to improve the competition of desirable grasses and legumes and avoid overgrazing of plants.

Chemical Control: There are several herbicides available to provide control of mayweed chamomile. In grasses grown for seed, the herbicides bromoxynil (Buctril®) and dicambda (Clarity®) can be applied and should provide fair to good control. In small grain crops, many herbicides can be used, although control varies. Mayweed chamomile is resistant to a number of herbicides, especially Group II herbicides.Repeated herbicide applications may be needed to achieve control of an infestation.

Getting up from falling numbers

December 2013, Wheatlife by Trista Crossley In some years, wheat farmers have to worry about disease destroying their crops. In other years, it can be pests, drought or other weather-related events. In really bad years, it can be all of the above. This year, the big bad in the Pacific Northwest was low falling number scores likely caused by preharvest sprouting due to rain. » More ...

One gene good; two gene better

December 2013, Wheatlife by Scott A. Yates WSU's next generation Clearfield varieties play catch up with two-gene releases Will the release of two, two-gene, herbicide tolerant varieties from Washington State University (WSU) reinvigorate the fortunes of the Clearfield technology? » More ...
Washington State University