Crops

Red-winged blackbirds reside in the marshy areas around farms and feast on field corn in the “roasting ear” stage.

Blackbirds in the corn

While many corn growers around Ohio are taking extensive measures to guard against pests this growing season, there are probably not so many who are going to the lengths to protect their corn yields from pests as Jevon Rockwell. The Rockwell family farms in Erie County up along Lake Erie and faces significant yield loss [...]

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No, not call a cell, sell a call!

Selling calls can boost profits

The market is quiet this week. Farmers are busy. Planting started in the west, while farmers in the east and south are waiting for soil to dry and the weather to warm. As always there are many “levers” affecting grain prices. Arguments and estimates can be made regarding many factors towards prices.   Reasons to [...]

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Soybean-based air freshener wins top prize in product innovation contest

A soybean-based air freshener won top prize in in the 2015 Student Soybean Product Innovation Competition of the Indiana Soybean Alliance and Purdue University. The competition is held annually to provide students with practical learning opportunities and promote new commercial uses for soybeans. The three students who developed the air freshener, which is called Soy [...]

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Cover crops garnering more interest in western Ohio

This week, area agriculturalists met at the St. Mary’s Township House and discuss cover crops after winter to prepare for spring planting season. Extension agents from Shelby, Auglaize and Mercer Counties, along with VanTilburg Farms, Inc. were represented at the meeting to discuss varieties of cover crop seeds to plant, the mixes, when they grow [...]

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Black cutworm and armyworm counts on the rise

Last week, both Purdue University and the University of Kentucky reported high black cutworm catches. In addition, UKY caught a large number of armyworms in one of their traps.  Both of these moth species migrate into our area, lay eggs, and the developing larvae can be significant pests of corn and wheat. Black cutworm—Females like [...]

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Avoiding spray drift damage

Spraying our crops is an important process to ensure a healthy, successful season. However, Mother Nature can make it difficult to find the right spray conditions. Drift damage to neighboring crops, animals and landscapes can not only be expensive, but also damage neighbor relationships and give agriculture a bad name. Drift is also an economic [...]

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Sidedressing

Nitrogen management, redux

With a slow start to spring corn planting, we also do not have our pre-plant nitrogen on yet in many cases. For both economical and environmental reasons it is better to wait to apply, so this may be a win-win. Yes, phosphorus (P) is a big concern for Lake Erie, but nitrogen (N) is also [...]

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Monitoring spotted wing drosophila

A relatively new but already widespread winged pest to Ohio small fruit growers can cause significant crop damage but, if spotted early, can be managed to avoid losses, according to an entomologist with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. While spotted wing drosophila may look like a common vinegar fly, [...]

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NCGA pushing EPA to stick to RFS timeframe

When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency earlier this month entered into a consent decree agreeing to a court-enforced timeline for establishing the Renewable Volume Obligation numbers for 2014 and 2015 for the Renewable Fuel Standard, the delayed timeline — especially for 2014 — were a reflection of the problems the EPA set up for itself [...]

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Historical perspective of planting corn in April

How much corn is typically planted in Ohio by the third week of April?  According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service (http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Ohio/Publications/Crop_Progress_&_Condition/index.asp), for the week ending April 13 no appreciable acreage of corn had been planted in Ohio (1%), which compared to 0% last year and 7% for the five year average. The table below [...]

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