Weed scientist named advisor: For northeastern California growers

Weeds have fascinated Rob Wilson since he was an undergraduate at Colorado State University (CSU). Hired this summer as a University of California Cooperative Extension farm advisor, the Midwest native should feel very much in his element among patches of yellow starthistle, fiddleneck, perennial pepperweed and other noxious weeds affecting northeastern California farms and rangeland.

Wilson will focus on weed ecology and cropping systems. His home office is in Susanville (Lassen County), but he'll also conduct research and Extension programs for farmers, ranchers and land managers in Plumas and Sierra counties.

“I am excited to have a new advisor with Rob's technical education and experience in noxious weed management join our team in the North Coast and Mountain Region,” said David Lile, Lassen County Cooperative Extension director. “He comes with a familiarity of Extension from his father and grandfather's work in Cooperative Extension. This combination of personal and professional commitment provides a great foundation for a successful advisor. We are fortunate to have someone so well-qualified.”

Father in Extension

Wilson's father is an Extension weed specialist for the University of Nebraska, and his grandfather was a county Extension agent in eastern Nebraska.

Wilson earned his bachelor of science degree (1998) in natural resource recreation and tourism at CSU, where his studies focused on parks/protected area management and commercial tourism. He worked at the CSU weed research lab as an undergraduate and then went on to earn his master of science degree in weed science. His masters thesis research, a cooperative project with the U.S. Forest Service and Dow Agrosciences, examined the effects of combining low rates of an herbicide with a biological control agent to improve the biocontrol's ability to control diffuse knapweed.

At CSU, Rob also gained experience conducting weed management research in cereal grains, sunflowers, sugar beets, corn, rangeland and natural areas.

Wilson can be reached at (530) 251-8132 or through e-mail at [email protected].

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