Latest Podcasts and Public Service Announcements

The Southern Plains Podcast is a source of information for agricultural producers and management professionals on how they can harden their operations to the impacts of extreme weather and climate events.

Podcasts - ( )

Jul 24, 2018
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we visit with Steve Swaffer, Executive Director of No-Till on the Plains, a 501c3 non-profit educational organization whose mission is to provide education and networking on agricultural production systems that model nature.  Steve talks to us about his organization, the role no-till and cover crops play in helping ag producers deal with extreme weather events and how No-Till on the Plains is working to educate farmers and ranchers on the benefits of soil health.


Jul 14, 2018
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we talk to Nathan Hale, Soil Health Specialist for USDA NRCS in the State of Texas.  Nathan talks to us about how the Natural Resources Conservation Service is working with producers to promote soil health/regenerative agriculture in Texas, how producers are responding to this work and the role soil health can play in helping farmer and ranchers adapt to extreme weather events.


Jun 6, 2018
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast, we visit with John Weir, Extension fire specialist at Oklahoma State University, about the risks of wildfire to agriculture in the region and opportunities to better protect production systems.


May 8, 2018
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast, we speak with Dr. Rick Haney, Research Soil Scientist at the USDA-ARS Grassland Soil and Water Research Laboratory in Temple TX, about his research on soil health and its implications for more sustainable production agriculture. 


Mar 29, 2018
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we talk to Tom Roth, Kansas State Agronomist for USDA NRCS about soil health, its roll in water and soil conservation and the work of NRCS in the state of Kansas.


Feb 21, 2018
In this episode, we visit with Dr. Larry Sanders, Professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics at Oklahoma State University. Dr. Sanders has spent the last several years focusing on natural resource issues and the conservation title of the Farm Bill, and has conducted a study of producer attitudes toward adoption of conservation practices in targeted watersheds.


Feb 2, 2018
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we visit with Dr. Cait Rottler, Research Fellow with the USDA Agriculture Research Service (ARS) and the USDA Southern Plains Climate Hub.  Dr. Rottler talks to us about the role of the Hub Fellows program, her ongoing research in the Southern Plains region and what she sees as challenges on the horizon for Agriculture.


Jan 5, 2018
In this episode, we visit with Trey Lam, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Conservation Commission, about the role of the State Conservation Agency in Oklahoma, the work they do to help agriculture producers adapt to extreme weather through conservation practices on the ground, and their partnership with USDA and local conservation districts.  We also discuss the Commission's role in protecting the state from flash flooding and their work in the areas of water quality and soil health.


Nov 27, 2017
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we visit with Andrew Lyon, Technical Unit Program Manager with the Kansas Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) program.  Andrew talks with us about the importance of land treatment strategies on farm and ranch land in protecting our water.


Oct 13, 2017
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we visit with Dr. Sherry Hunt, the Research Leader at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Hydraulic Engineering Research Unit about the research conducted at the Unit, the importance of the USDA upstream flood control program and the future needs of water infrastructure at USDA.


Sep 13, 2017
Farmers, ranchers and rural communities hit by the effects of Hurricane Harvey have options available to them from USDA to help with their recovery. In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast we share information about USDA's response to the storm and tell individuals how they can start the process to see what assistance they qualify for.


Jul 28, 2017
In this episode of the Southern Plains Podcast, we interview Gary McManus, Oklahoma State Climatologist.  Gary talks about the changes we are seeing in our weather patterns from a historical perspective, flash droughts, ice storms and what the crystal ball shows for the region's weather.


Jun 30, 2017
All too often farmers and ranchers think about soil erosion as a problem of the past. The Dust Bowl of the "dirty thirties" was horrible, but we beat back the tide of dust, right? In this episode we will discuss how we still are seeing high rates of soil erosion and how it is having a major impact.


Jun 19, 2017
This episode of our podcast covers information on the spring fires that plagued the Texas Panhandle, Northwest Oklahoma and Southwest Kansas in the spring of 2017.  It also contains information on help that is available to farmers and ranchers to help them deal with the effects of this disaster.


Public Service Announcements (PSA)

The Southern Plains Climate Hub, in partnership with Redlands Community College and USDA NRCS, is promoting soil health as a tool for climate change adaptation and to help producers adapt to extreme weather events. As part of this promotional effort, the Hub is developing a series of Public Service Announcements (PSAs) featuring producers from across the Southern Plains speaking on the benefits of soil health management. 


Kenneth McAlister grows cotton, corn, milo, canola, wheat, sesame, peanuts and soybeans near the Red River in Wichita County Texas.  He has been no-tilling his land since 2005 and has been utilizing cover crops for the last 4 years.


Scott Carpenter is a conservation district director and wheat producer from Nocona, Texas.  He utilizes cover crops and no-till on his land to hold on to more water and reduce erosion on his land.


A cotton, peanut, corn and wheat producer from Morton Texas, Glen Lyon rotates crops on his 7,500 acre farm to reduce erosion and increase the water holding capacity of the soil.


A Farmer and Rancher from Norton, Kansas, Rusty Miller understands the importance of controlling erosion and increasing soil moisture.  Rusty incorporates cover crops and grazing into his cropping systems to help increase the health of his soil and improve his bottom line by reducing fuel costs and increasing fertilizer efficiency.


Michael Thompson is a farmer/rancher from Almena, KS. Michael along with his father Richard and his brother Brian operate Thompson Farm & Ranch LLC. The farm is comprised of acreage in Norton County, KS, and Furnas County, NE, and grows wheat, corn, oats, barley, as well as cover crop cocktails. The ranch consists of a cow/calf operation that grazes on native range and diverse cover crops on farmland acres. 


Lance Feikert is the fifth generation farmer and rancher from Bucklin, Kansas. He raises wheat, milo and soybeans on dryland and irrigated acres. He also utilizes cattle in his operation to better utilize crops and encourage better soil health.With less water available to pump each year, many of his irrigated fields are becoming more like their dryland counterparts. No-till helps him make the most of limited resources. Lance says no-till practices improve the microbial community under the soil and helps increase water infiltration.


Steve Pope is a 6th generation Western Oklahoma farmer and rancher.  He has been no-tilling for over 13 years and incorporates cover crops and grazing into his cropping systems.  Steve participates in USDA conservation programs such as the Environmental Quality Incentives program (EQIP) and the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)


Jimmy Emmons is a life-long farmer and ranchers from Leedey, Oklahoma.  A local conservation district board member and a past President of the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts (OACD), Jimmy knows the importance of conserving our soil, water, air and wildlife habitats while working to protect the bottom lines of agriculture producers.


Grant Victor is a Northeast Oklahoma agriculture producer and the winner of the 2016 Outstanding Landowner Award from the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts and the Nature Conservancy of Oklahoma.   A life-long resident of Afton, Oklahoma, Grant uses soil health practices to improve productivity on his land while controlling run-off and soil erosion.