Sharing Research Results

Fisher Delta Research Center field day featured tours on soybeans, rice and cotton

A great crowd gathered for the 57th Fisher Delta Research Center field day, which focused on “Guiding the Future of Delta Agriculture.”

Attendees packed the tour wagons to hear presentations on the soybean, cotton and rice research taking place at the Center.

“Our researchers work tirelessly throughout the year on an enormous variety of projects, each of which highlight important topics that our area farmers and producers are interested in,” said Director Trent Haggard. “Our field day gives our researchers an opportunity to share the results from their research, as well as answer any questions that come their way.”

Pengyin Chen and Gene Stevens presented during the soybean tour. Chen, who holds the Endowed Professorship in Soybean Breeding, discussed updates and new varieties from the Center’s soybean breeding program. Stevens, MU Extension professor, shared his research related to soybean irrigation by maturity group.

“Pengyin and Gene are extremely active with their research programs,” Haggard said. “They work closely with the Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council and several of our local farmers. Pengyin and his team is incredibly consistent, producing new soybean varieties each year. Gene has years of great research with numerous crops, including a great deal of research with soybeans.”

President of the UM System Mun Choi met with guests and spoke during the 57th Fisher Delta Research Center field day.President of the UM System Mun Choi met with guests and spoke during the 57th Fisher Delta Research Center field day.

The cotton tour featured Calvin Meeks, a cotton agronomist, and Earl Vories, a USDA-ARS agricultural engineer. Meeks talked about managing cotton growth and development with remote sensing technologies. Vories discussed site-specific cotton management.

“Earl has been a popular presenter at our field day for the last 15 years,” Haggard said. “He always brings good information to our attendees. This is Calvin’s first field day, and we’re excited to have him at the Center to help lead the cotton projects.”

Jim Heiser and David Dunn spoke during the rice tour. Heiser, a senior research associate, shared research on the newest performance of available herbicides in furrow-irrigated rice. Dunn, an MU Extension associate in the soil testing lab, presented on the importance of sulfur treatments for optimal rice yields.

“Jim and David do an exceptional job with their research,” Haggard said. “We also appreciate that they are willing to share their valuable, new and professional findings each year at our field day.”

The field day also featured an honorary breakfast with several University of Missouri dignitaries and state office holders, including Missouri Governor Michael Parson; Senators Roy Blunt and Claire McCaskill; Congressman Jason Smith; Lieutenant Governor Mike Kehoe; Attorney General Josh Hawley; Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft; State Treasurer Eric Schmitt; Missouri Department of Agriculture Director Chris Chinn; President of the UM System Mun Choi; MU Chancellor Alexander Cartwright; and MU Board of Curators member Darryl Chatman.

CAFNR Vice Chancellor and Dean Christopher Daubert also spoke. More than 1,000 individuals attended the breakfast.

“We appreciate everyone who took the time to not only attend our field day, but who also made time to speak to a great crowd,” Haggard said.

Gene and Linda Windham, Chuck and Judy Earnest, Alex Fields, and Robin Wenneker were all honored as the newest donors to the Center’s Club of 1000 Endowment, which benefits additional agricultural research for southeast Missouri.

For a closer look at the Fisher Delta Research Center field day, visit: