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Thesis (M.A.)—University of Nebraska—Lincoln, 1956. Department of Agricultural Economics.


Copyright 1956, the author. Used by permission.


Farmers in the southwestern portion of the Nebraska Panhandle have often experienced periods of low crop yields and low farm income. Occasions of successive complete crop failures and heavy financial losses have also occurred. Because of the limited rainfall, sparse vegetative cover, light sandy soil and frequency of high winds, conditions of severe soil blowing are not uncommon for the area. The high incidence of hail is also a factor that often causes serious crop loss. Frequently, for any of the above reasons, large acreages of seeded crops are abandoned before harvest. Yields vary widely from year to year and from farm to farm in any one season. At the present time many farmers in the area, particularly in southern Kimball County, are seeking new crops and better land management practices in order to bolster and stabilize their farm income.

This study will attempt to determine the economic feasibility of the various alternative uses of farm resources in the southern Kimball County area. These uses will include the production of alternative crops and the reseeding of cropland to grass for the production of livestock. Special emphasis will be placed on several of the alternative crops that have been suggested for the High Plains area. An analysis will be made to determine which crops may economically serve as alternatives to wheat production, and what yields and prices of the various alternative crops are necessary to give the same net income as wheat production. Attention will also be given to the several ways in which grass may be sued in the farm organization.

The systems of farming chosen for this study are cash-grain with emphasis on wheat production, cash-grain with a combination of wheat and alternative crops, and cash-grain and livestock with emphasis on grazing.

Advisor: Abram W. Epp