Farmers can now make ARC and PLC elections for 2023

Agricultural producers can now change election and enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage programs for the 2023 crop year, two key safety net programs offered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Producers have until March 15, 2023, to enroll in these two programs. Additionally, USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) has started issuing payments totaling more than $255 million to producers with 2021 crops that have triggered payments through ARC or PLC.  

“It’s that time of year for produces to consider all of their risk management options, including safety-net coverage elections through Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage,” said Zach Ducheneaux, FSA Administrator. “We recognize that market prices have generally been very good, but if the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, frequent catastrophic weather events and the Ukraine war have taught us anything, it’s that we must prepare for the unexpected. It’s through programs like ARC and PLC that FSA can provide producers the economic support and security they need to manage market volatility and disasters.” … Continue reading

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USDA announces regional networks for new Transition of Organic Partnership Program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it is establishing cooperative agreements in six regions across the United States for the Organic Transition Initiative, Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP). Organizations participating in the partnership network will work together to establish and administer a farmer-to-farmer mentorship program providing direct farmer training, education, and outreach activities. These activities will help transitioning and recently transitioned producers who face technical, cultural, and market shifts during the transition period and the first few years of organic certification.

The Organic Transition Initiative (OTI) was launched in August 2022 as part of USDA’s food system transformation effort to support local and regional food systems, expand access to markets to more producers and increase the affordable food supply for more Americans, while promoting climate-smart agriculture and ensuring equity for all producers. OTI provides comprehensive support for farmers transitioning to organic production and will deliver wrap-around technical assistance, including farmer-to-farmer mentoring; provide direct support through conservation financial assistance and additional crop insurance assistance; and support market development projects in targeted markets.… Continue reading

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A weed’s dream come true…

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader, a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean check-off

It is a weed’s dream come true, that is if weeds had dreams. After 35 years of service as the Ohio State University Extension State Weed Specialist, Mark Loux, (a.k.a. Dr. Death to weeds) is retiring.

Loux has been a farmers’ best friend and a weed’s worst nightmare. While a true statistical count has not been conducted, it could reasonably be estimated that Loux is responsible for the literal death of millions, possibly even billions of weeds in the State of Ohio and around the world. Add to that number the untold millions of weeds that were never able to germinate because of his persistent recommendation for the use of residual herbicides, and it is no wonder that the weed world is breathing, (or respirating in plant terms) a collective sigh of relief.

Loux’s career in weed science began, in part, due to his dad, who worked as a chemist for Dupont on the East Coast.… Continue reading

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Increase seeding rates for late-planted wheat

By Laura LindseyPrabath Senanayaka Mudiyanselage, Ohio State University Extension

In general, the best time to plant wheat is the 10-day period starting the day after the fly-free safe date. When wheat is planted more than 10-days after the fly-free safe date, there is an increased chance of reduced fall growth and winterhardiness, but the same yield may be achieved as earlier planted wheat if freezing weather does not occur until late November or early December. However, a higher seeding rate is recommended. According to the Ohio Agronomy Guide, for wheat planted 3 to 4 weeks after the fly-free-safe date, a seeding rate of 1.6 to 2.0 million seeds per acre should be used. 

Our recent research trial in Wood County supports the wheat seeding rate recommendation found in the Ohio Agronomy Guide. In Wood County, there was no effect of seeding rate when wheat was planted 6 days prior to or six days after the county fly-safe date.… Continue reading

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Partnerships continue nematode education for the second annual SCN Action Month

Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) continues to be the leading cause of soybean yield loss in North America. BASF Agricultural Solutions and The SCN Coalition have joined forces for the second consecutive year to promote SCN Action Month, a monthlong initiative to provide growers with the tools and information they need to defend against this devastating pest.

Throughout October, BASF will once again provide free soil test kits to the first 500 growers who request online by October 31.

“We’re finding there are still growers who either aren’t aware of SCN or just don’t believe they have it in their field,” said Troy Bauer, BASF Senior Field Technical Representative for Seed Treatment – Western Corn Belt. “Soil testing during the month of October is key to this effort. When growers know their numbers, they can make a solid management plan for next year.”

Dan Ory, a grower in Earlham, Iowa received a free soil test kit from the SCN Action Month campaign last year and was surprised by his results.… Continue reading

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Fall sprayer maintenance

By Erdal Ozkan, Adapted from C.O.R.N. 2022-36

It is very likely that you will not be using your sprayer again until next spring. If you want to avoid potential problems and save yourself from frustration and major headaches next spring, you will be wise to give your sprayer a little bit of TLC (Tender Loving Care) this time of the year. Yes, there may be still crop to be harvested, and you may still be a busy time of the year for some of you. However, do not forget about winterizing your sprayer. Do not delay it too long, if you already have not done so. You don’t want a pump that is cracked and/or not working at its full capacity because you did not properly winterize it before the temperature falls below freezing.  Here are some important things you need to do with your sprayer this time of the year.… Continue reading

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How no-till improves land values

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

No-till Farmer (farming magazine) recently put together a report: How No-till Improves Land Values.  This report put an economic value on conservation farming practices that improve the environment, but also preserves our soil.  While farmers own the land and have the right to farm it how they choose; long-term, society has an interest in preserving the land for future generations.  Here are some results of research on the benefits of no-till to society.

An organization called Rural Investment for Protecting our Environment (RIPE) came up with $112 per acre as the value associated with no-till farming.  This included $7 for increased carbon sequestration, $16 for improved air quality and human health, $25 for better water quality, and $44 for improved soil nutrient management; all on a per acre basis.  No-till Farmer has been documenting farmer benefits for 25 years with farmers indicated they saved $25-$90 per acre in reduced production costs. … Continue reading

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Using plot data to make decisions

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, Product Manager for Seed Consultants, Inc. 

As harvest is completed across the Eastern Corn Belt, seed companies, universities, and growers will have the chance to compile and analyze data from yield testing. One of the most important decisions a farmer will face all year is deciding what variety to plant and in which field to plant it. To ensure that the best possible decision is made next spring, it is important to spend some time looking at yield data. While reviewing data is critical, knowing how to determine whether it is accurate and useful is equally important. Below are some tips for using data to make sound planting decisions next spring.

Look for Replicated Data

Don’t rely on yield results from one strip plot on a farm or from a single plot location. Look for data from randomized tests that are repeated multiple times and across multiple locations.… Continue reading

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Ohio Corn Marketing Program public notice of nomination and election

Pursuant to Section 924.07 of the Ohio Revised Code, Dorothy Pelanda, Director, Ohio Department of Agriculture will conduct an election of the Ohio Corn Marketing Program Board on December 6, 2022. 

The Ohio Corn Marketing Program is designed to increase the market for corn and enhancing opportunities for Ohio corn producers. The program provides funds for corn research, education, and market development and promotion. 

The election to the Board will include these five districts. 

District 1: Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Lucas, Williams

District 4: Allen, Paulding, Putnum, Van Wert

District 7: Carroll, Columbiana, Holmes, Jefferson, Stark, Tuscarawas, Wayne

District 13: Butler, Clermont, Clinton, Hamilton, Warren

The Nomination Procedure is as follows

  • Nominating petitions may be obtained from 

Dorothy Pelanda, Director 

Ohio Department of Agriculture
Legal Section
8995 East Main Street
Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068-3399
Telephone 1-800-282-1955 or 614-728-6390

  • Petitions require at least twenty-five (25) valid signatures from Ohio corn producers who reside within the district in which the candidate seeks election. 
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Ag groups concerned about Mexican produce imports

In response to the recent petition requesting that the U.S. Trade Representative initiate a Section 301 investigation on fresh produce imports from Mexico, the American Soybean Association joined fellow agriculture organizations to urge the agency to deny the request. In October the groups sent a letter to USTR Ambassador Katherine Tai outlining the negative impact a 301 investigation would have on the current relationship with Mexico, one of the U.S.’s largest trading partners.   

While the petition only asks USTR for “relief,” the groups assert that the context of the petition seeks tariffs on imports of produce from Mexico. Imposing a tariff could further exacerbate economic uncertainty and, driving higher prices, reduce access to healthy domestic and imported fresh produce that U.S. families expect year-round. Another concern the groups emphasize is that if Mexico decided to impose retaliatory tariffs, the U.S agricultural industry, which supports more than 22 million jobs and 20% of the U.S.… Continue reading

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Harvest considerations for corn

By Osler OrtezAlexander Lindsey, Ohio State University Extension

Despite a late start in many areas on the 2022 crop season, during the last days of September and early October, combines started to roll around the state.

Despite 2022 being another challenging year, yield forecasts show a high probability of near or above long-term average yields in Ohio (between 207 and 250 bushels per acre for the analyzed locations). Certainly, this would apply if adequate conditions persisted in the growing season. Fields planted too early, too late, or affected by other factors (e.g., replanting, soil crusting, dry periods, pest, disease) would not be expected to yield that well.

Whichever is the case, the field season is not complete until harvest is done.
Here is a list of considerations as corn harvest decisions are being made.

Physiological maturity
The R6 growth stage happens approximately 55 to 65 days after silking (R1 stage).… Continue reading

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Identification and management of corn ear molds

By Ryan Klamfoth, Pioneer field agronomist

The recent cool weather has delayed corn maturation and harvest. Additionally, the lower temperatures create an ideal environment for development of ear molds. The four most common types of corn ear molds in Ohio include: Aspergillus, Diplodia, Fusarium, and Gibberella. 

These fungal pathogens survive in the soil and on crop residue allowing them to infect developing corn ears. When the proper moisture and weather conditions are present, the silks become infected by the fungal spores. The amount of ear mold present within a field can be impacted by the interaction of planting date, hybrid maturity, and rainfall/humidity during grain fill. Scoring hybrid differences are extremely difficult since the infection is very situational and often a severity scale at one location is completely inverted at another location. 

Although this infection occurs at silking, the mold is often not present until the middle or end of grain fill stages.… Continue reading

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Tips for applying fall lime

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

After crops are harvested, fall is a good time to apply lime. While lime can be applied any time,  ideally, the soil should be dry to allow good spreading with out rutting up a field. Here are some tips for fall lime spreading.  

First, get a good soil test to evaluate soil pH. Dr. Steve Culman, Ohio State University says the ideal pH is dependent upon the crop and the subsoil pH.  In western Ohio with calcareous soils (subsoils with limestone), lime is usually not needed until the subsoil pH for mineral soils gets below 6.0 for corn and soybeans and 6.2 for alfalfa.  In other parts of the state (eastern and southern Ohio), where the subsoil pH is less than 6.0 for mineral soils, additional lime is recommended after the soil pH drops to 6.2 for corn and soybean, and 6.5 for alfalfa.… Continue reading

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Maintaining purity in non-GMO production

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, Product Manager, Seed Consultants, Inc. 

Many corn growers in the Eastern Corn Belt produce non-GMO corn attempting to capture an additional premium. Depending on the contracting elevator, standard GMO contamination allowances are typically from 0% – 1%. Producing non-GMO corn within the acceptable tolerances of GMO contamination is possible; however, there are several challenges and potential pitfalls that make production of 100% pure non-GMO corn a tremendous undertaking and can keep growers from capturing a premium for their corn. Planting non-GMO seed does not necessarily mean the harvested shelled corn will be non-GMO free. Tests used by elevators to determine if GMOs are present may not be 100% accurate, but they are a determining factor as to whether a load will be accepted.

If a grower plants non-GMO corn, what could cause GMO contamination?

• Contaminated planting equipment and seed tenders

• Contaminated seed

• Mistakes made in record keeping where hybrids were not correctly identified at planting and/or harvest, leading to contamination

• Adventitious pollen from GMO corn fields can cause cross-pollination of non-GMO corn

• Contaminated combines at harvest

• Contaminated grain carts, wagons, trucks, augers, grain legs, and grain bins

What steps can be taken in an attempt to produce grain that meets GMO tolerances?Continue reading

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Fall Soybean Disease Considerations (Part 2)

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader, a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean check-off

Knowing the Soybean Cyst Nematode (SCN) numbers in a field matters. Knowing which sources of resistance that the nematode is resistant to also matters.  

“SCN is rated by the number of eggs found in 100 cc of soil,” said Horacio Lopez-Nicora, Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University in Soybean Pathology and Nematology. “A soil sample sent into the lab will help us decide what management should be implemented. If a sample is pulled in the fall and the SCN numbers are high, we can help identify if that population can reproduce on PI 88788 and at what level they can reproduce. That gives you the winter to figure out what other source of resistance should be used.”

Once a farmer knows their numbers, they can create a plan of action to address their best management options to reduce the SCN population in their field.… Continue reading

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Harvesting and handling corn with ear rot

By Jason Hartschuh, CCAPierce Paul, Ohio State University Extension

Ear rots are beginning to show up in pockets across the state, leading to concerns about mycotoxin contamination of grain. So far, we have received images and samples with Gibberella, Diplodia, Fusarium, and Trichoderma ear rots, four of the most common ear rots in the state. Of these, Gibberella (GER) and Fusarium ear rots are of greatest concerns, since grain harvested from affected fields will be contaminated with mycotoxins, particularly vomitoxin in the case of GER. Vomitoxin is a concern for the livestock and ethanol industries. Feed made from heavily contaminated grain may lead to vomiting and low weight gain in animals; pigs are particularly sensitive. Vomitoxin is not destroyed during ethanol production, nor is it removed in the ethanol fraction, but rather becomes concentrated in the grain fraction. This leads to three-fold higher levels of the toxin in DDGS, a nutrient-rich co-product of ethanol production that is commonly sold as an ingredient for animal feed.… Continue reading

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Fall soybean disease considerations (Part 1)

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader, a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean check-off

The No. 1 robber of yield in soybeans is soybean cyst nematode (SCN).

“In the fall after harvest is a really good time of the year to collect soil samples to check levels of soybean cyst nematode,” said Horacio Lopez-Nicora, with Ohio State University Extension. “With funding from the Ohio Soybean Council, we are still processing two samples free for each farm to test for SCN. It is important to remember that you can only manage a problem if you know that you have the problem, and since SCN does not often show above ground symptoms, the best way to find if you have a problem that needs managed is to send in a sample. Fall is a common time to pull soil samples for soil fertility testing, so when soil fertility samples are taken, a sub-sample can be taken from those samples to submit to our lab to check for SCN.”… Continue reading

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