Environmental & other issues

Prior Hail Damage


Generally, hail prior to jointing rips or shreds leaves causing little permanent damage. However, hail events in later stages can cause minor to severe yield losses. The most serious hail damage occurs when the stem below the head or boot is struck by hail stones, causing severing or kinking of the stem. Also, direct hits by hail stones to the head can damage the whole head or parts of the head. This can cause severe grain shattering. Direct hits by hail stones while in the boot stage can damage the head, causing it to get trapped inside the boot. Damaged heads tend to be gnarled and misshapen as they emerge. Hail stones hitting the stem will result in bruising. The leaf sheath may become chlorotic, and the stem eventually lodges much later as grain fill causes the head to become heavier.

Hail damage can shatter mature wheat heads, causing a opportunistic event where wheat curl mites can survive on green tissue that lands on the ground long enough to move into volunteer and/or nearby grasses. Then, this population of mites can build up and infest fall planted wheat. 



Potential causes


Photo credits

Ron Seymour