Crops



Minimizing herbicide injury for crops

By Jeff Rectenwald, Asgrow/Dekalb agronomist

Post-emergence herbicide tank mixtures are an important element of integrated weed management of tough-to-control broadleaf weeds in corn. Environmental conditions, such as those that have favored development of thin cuticles on the leaf surfaces of corn this spring, influence the absorption of post-emergence herbicides and potential crop tolerance. Warm, humid conditions promote rapid absorption while cool conditions may slow crop development, herbicide uptake and crop selectivity. Crops under stress may not metabolize herbicides quickly enough to avoid crop injury. Therefore, it is important to take appropriate steps to minimize the risk for injury.

 

Basics of leaf cuticles

The leaf cuticle changes during early corn development. From emergence to V4, under normal conditions, corn leaves have crystalline deposits of wax on the cuticle, which reduce herbicide spray retention and leaf wet-ability by trapping air under the spray droplets. There is rapid change in the cuticle from V5 to V8 as the wax becomes a smooth film on the leaves.… Continue reading

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Ohio State tours to showcase urban farming on parking lots

Joe Kovach, an Ohio State University scientist who is studying the best ways to grow food crops on old, asphalt parking lots, will hold free public tours at his test plots in Wooster this spring and summer.

The tours are aimed at urban agriculturists and will take place at 4 p.m. on May 31, June 28, July 26 and Aug. 30.

“We’ll cover two main points: the basic ecological principles involved, and that you can actually do this,” he said. “People say parking lots are barren, but you can get more production off of a back parking lot than you ever thought you could.”

Kovach is growing apples, peaches, green beans, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, tomatoes and more on an asphalt parking lot behind an old, closed dormitory at Ohio State’s Agricultural Technical Institute.

He’s testing several growing methods: in pots and raised beds sitting on top of the pavement; in pots suspended on wire mesh fencing, a form of “vertical gardening”; in beds set in trenches cut right through the asphalt; and all three ways both inside and outside of high tunnels.… Continue reading

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Billy Pontius, Fairfield County, May 28

“We finished up on May 18. It was getting pretty dry at the end, but most of the last beans we planted are up and looking pretty good. We had a rough spell with the corn there for a couple of weeks. That cold weather really took a toll on the corn more than I anticipated. We had some seedling blights, a little bit of cutworm and some wireworms. There was nothing major, but just a lot of little things and the cold, wet weather slowed the crop down. But, planting early was a gamble I was willing to take. And, if we had waited, we would be dealing with this dry weather.

“It seems like everybody around here has a few troublesome fields this spring. We didn’t replant. There were a few spots here and there, but I would have ended up tearing up more than I would have helped myself, especially as dry as it is now. … Continue reading

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Mark Dowden, Champaign County, May 28

“We’re getting pretty dry. We could sure use some rain. We finished up about a week and a half ago. The later crops took off pretty quickly. There was a little period there where some stuff got planted that really struggled. Some got replanted. We weren’t planting at that time and didn’t have to do any replanting. We got lucky. There was a lot that had to be redone after the big rains in early May. The crop looked nice, but it got covered up with water.

“Some of our early beans had bean leaf beetles on them pretty good because there weren’t many other beans around. They drove through that, though, and moved on. I guess with as dry as it is, stuff will be rooting down so we’ll be better off if we get dry weather later in the year. They are talking about hopefully some rain here.

“We put ammonia on up front and only sidedressed a few acres to fill in a few wet holes where we couldn’t get ammonia on.… Continue reading

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Jim Herring, Wyandot County, May 28

“We could sure use a rain. I think the corn is getting some stress because of the lack of rain. I finished up about a week ago, but I actually have 30 acres of beans to plant yet. I have waited almost a year for the tiling machine to show up, so I thought we could wait a little longer to plant to finish tiling.

“I did have to replant about 300 acres of beans. The one and only big rain we had this spring came at the wrong time for those. In this area it was not as bad as the next county over where they got 5 or 6 inches and they really had to replant a lot.

“We had some cutworms, but nothing major. In general the crops are looking pretty good. We just need some rain now to perk things up and get the crops going.

They say there is maybe a chance tomorrow, but, with this dry air, it takes a pretty good weather front to get things going again.… Continue reading

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Between the Rows, May 28

Mark Thomas, Stark County

“We are done planting and done making first cutting. Everything is coming up and looking good. There were a few guys that were replanting up here after the ground crusted over from the hard rain. Some guys had the seed corn maggot issues in the beans and corn both.

“We need rain. We haven’t had rain at my house in four weeks. We were wet pretty late up here. If you dig down in the ground more than an inch and a half, there is still moisture down there. Things are coming up well.

“We needed a good week of hot weather so we had good protein hay. It made good tonnage for us and we had around 21 or 22% protein. That is our bread and butter and when it is time for us to make hay we really had to concentrate on that.

“I don’t think we have to replant anything.… Continue reading

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USDA seeking comments on report times

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Chief Economist Joseph W. Glauber announced today that USDA is reviewing release times for several major statistical reports due to recent changes in market hours by major commodity exchanges. The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) and the World Agricultural Outlook Board (WAOB), the USDA entities responsible for the reports, will seek public comment on the release times and procedures of their key statistical reports. In the coming weeks, USDA expects to publish a notice in the Federal Register advising the public of the comment period. USDA is reviewing release times of the following statistical reports: World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates, Acreage, Cattle, Cattle on Feed, Crop Production, Grain Stocks, Prospective Plantings, Quarterly Hogs and Pigs, and Small Grain Summary.

The current USDA release times of 8:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. ET will remain in effect until further notice.

“It is important that USDA continue to ensure the integrity of its report release process, particularly as global exchanges move closer to 24-hour trading,” Glauber said.… Continue reading

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OSA soybean yield contest

The Ohio Soybean Association (OSA) announced the launch of the state’s third annual Soybean Yield and Quality Contest for the 2012 growing season. An overall state yield winner will be awarded along with category prizes for the top placing entrants, including winners of the quality contest based on the percentages of oil and protein. The fee is $100 per entry.

The four yield categories include:

  • Conventional tillage
  • No-till
  • Non-GMO soybeans – Conventional tillage
  • Non-GMO soybeans – No-till.

Developed to promote the importance of oil and protein, the quality contest is optional to enter. However, a farmer must enter the soybean yield contest in order to enter the soybean quality contest. This contest is based on the overall highest percentage oil and percentage protein content in the state. Entrants in the quality contest must submit a two-pound sample of soybeans for testing.

All entry forms and entry fees for the 2012 Soybean Yield and Quality Contest must be postmarked by Aug.… Continue reading

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Dust could hurt spray efficacy

Dry soil conditions have contributed both to accelerated crop planting and to spraying with postemergence herbicides.

“It is unusual at this point in the season that such a high percentage of corn acres have already been sprayed with postemergence herbicides,” said Aaron Hager, University of Illinois associate professor of weed science.

However, one potentially adverse consequence of the very dry soil is that large amounts of dust are often propelled into the air by equipment used to apply postemergence herbicides.

“While planting an on-farm research location last week, we noticed a large cloud of dust in the distance. Closer observation revealed that the dust cloud was being generated during the application of a postemergence corn herbicide,” Hager said.

He is concerned that herbicides applied under very dry, dusty conditions might have reduced effectiveness. Airborne dust reduces the activity of some foliar-applied herbicides, including glyphosate.

Greenhouse research conducted by researchers at North Dakota State University in 2006 found that control of nightshade species with glyphosate was reduced when dust was deposited on the leaf surfaces before, or within 15 minutes after, glyphosate application.… Continue reading

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Millcreek Gardens growing strong for more than 30 years

By Matt Reese

With a rich, warm growing season of summer blooms ahead, the thoughts of gardeners turn from the early May scramble to get a vegetable garden out to the simple beauty of ornamental plants for the landscape. And, for many, a trip (or several) to the local garden center is an annual part of late spring and early summer.

For more than 30 years, some of those garden centers, from the Chicago-area to Pittsburg, and Detroit to Louisville, Ky. have been getting some of their plant supply from Millcreek Gardens LLC, in Union County.

“Our yearly sales volume in terms of number of units sold in a year is approximately 1 million. We have about 200,000 square feet of growing space in our greenhouses, and another 40,000 square feet of growing space in outdoor nursery areas,” said George Pealer, the owner of Millcreek Gardens. “We specialize in herbaceous perennials, herbs, and ornamental grasses grown in containers.… Continue reading

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Beck’s Hybrids reveals “Panther” for charity

For the second year in a row, Beck’s Hybrids is pleased to announce the We Care for Orphans Adoption Fund Sweepstakes. The Sweepstakes will kick off at the 2012 Indianapolis 500, where event goers will have the opportunity to win a 2012 Limited Edition Supercharged Camaro PantherTM by SLP. But it doesn’t stop there, the winner will receive the number one car out of only 100 Panther’s being produced.

“It’s not every day that you get the opportunity to raise money for a great cause, plus have the opportunity to win one of the rarest Camaros to ever be produced,” said Scott Beck, vice president of Beck’s Hybrids. “Last year, a total of $85,543 was raised for the charity and more than 20 families were helped. This year, with the help of farmers and car enthusiasts from across the United States, our goal is to reach $100,000.”

Painted black with gold accents, the supercharged Panther is a convertible and has a 6.2 liter, 427 cubic inch engine with aluminum short block and heads producing 600 horse-power.

Continue reading

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NCGA online entry open for National Corn Yield Contest

The National Corn Growers Association opened online entry for the 2012 National Corn Yield Contest.  This format allows farmers to quickly and easily submit all necessary entry forms while taking advantage of the special early entry discount available until June 15.  With fees reduced to $80 until that time, NCGA reminds growers that a small time investment now saves money later this summer.

“The online entry option makes taking advantage of the early entry discount easier than ever,” said NCGA Production and Stewardship Action Team Chair Dean Taylor. “We have seen many consecutive years of significant contest growth.  With favorable conditions across much of the country, I encourage members to take advantage of the discount, use the easy online form and become a part of the contest.  Also, I encourage non-members to explore the many benefits that NCGA members enjoy and consider joining both the association and entering the contest.”

The online entry software allows growers to enter the contest and join NCGA and their state association.… Continue reading

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Bugs aplenty chomping crops

By Ron Hammond and Andy Michel, Ohio State University Extension entomologists

 

There are plenty of bugs out there in fields this year that should be on the radar of scouters.

We just received a few reports of true armyworm feeding on various crops, including wheat, corn, and even hay. This might be a good time to scout fields for their presence and feeding injury, especially on wheat that is still filling their heads and corn if planted into grassy covers such as rye, or in fields with a heavy grass weed pressure.

On wheat, the primary concern is from feeding on the flag leaf if the heads are not yet filled. With the flag leaf being the most important leaf on the plant, it is critical that it be protected if the heads are still filling. As the head is filled and the flag leaf becomes less important, leaf feeding is not as critical.… Continue reading

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Alltech Cultivates Crop Science Division

Jon Carloftis, award-winning garden designer, garden writer, television guest, author, and lecturer

Natural nutrition is not just for the animals anymore as Alltech takes its technology out of the barn and into the field with the official launch of its Crop Science division. With industrial-use products and a consumer line backed by celebrity green thumb Jon Carloftis, Alltech Crop Science addresses the production of citrus to silage and everything in between. Fuelled by the power of yeast, Alltech Crop Science products offer a viable alternative to conventional agrochemicals.

“Consumers are increasingly discerning in their food choices, and are asking for more natural products. As a result, some traditional methods of production have become obsolete as more and more chemicals are being banned on a global scale,” said Geoff Frank, CEO of Alltech Crop Science. “As producers are looking for alternatives, our technology is integral to propelling the industry into the future.”… Continue reading

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CME starts first week of a new era

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

A new era in American agriculture was ushered in this week. The CME expanded its grain trading hours and is now trading 21 hours each day. Beginning Sunday night the electronic session started at 6 pm eastern time, going until the next day at 3 pm. The markets will then close on Friday afternoons at 3 p.m. eastern time. No longer is there a trading pause from 8:15 eastern until the pit opening at 10:30 am eastern. The pit will continue its normal trading hours of 10:30 a.m. eastern until 2:15 p.m. eastern. The settlements will continue to be posted in the afternoon. Electronic trade in the afternoon will continue 45 minutes beyond the 2:15 p.m. pit close. The settlements for the day will continue to use the 2:15 p.m. pit close. This change by the CME first started out as a 22 hour day and was then revised back to 21 hours.… Continue reading

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OSA Concerned with ODOT Audit Conclusions

The Ohio Soybean Association (OSA) expresses concern regarding the conclusions of an Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) performance audit released yesterday by Auditor of State Dave Yost. In the report, Auditor Yost recommends that the Ohio General Assembly revise the requirement that state agencies use a certain percentage of biodiesel fuel in state vehicles and equipment.

OSA believes that the economic, energy security and environmental benefits of using a percentage of biodiesel are more than worth a slight premium per gallon compared to 100 percent petroleum diesel.

“Biodiesel is a sustainable, more environmentally friendly fuel made from renewable resources grown right here in Ohio,” said Bret Davis, OSA president and Delaware County soybean farmer. “It reduces our dependence on foreign oil, while also adding jobs and significant economic impact. By using a product grown and produced in our state, we are keeping our taxpayer dollars here and in our rural communities.”… Continue reading

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Watch for seedling blights in corn

By John Brien, AgriGold agronomist

The spring of 2012 is shaping up to be another planting season to remember. Late March was warm and beautiful and got a lot of growers excited about planting corn, then April hit. The first portion of April was decent but after April 10, the temperatures were less than ideal. While the soil conditions were good in most areas, the less than ideal soil temperatures kept most growers wondering when to plant corn. Unfortunately the cool to cold soil temperatures were, in fact, a major hindrance in corn growth.

While most corn planted in Mid-April emerged, that emergence took 2 to 4 weeks and once it emerged, the growth has been less than ideal. The latest concern on the corn planted on April 17 through April 20 is a large and often devastating infestation of seedling blights. Seedling blights is a generic term for soil-borne pathogens such as Pythium and Fusarium attacking the struggling corn plant.… Continue reading

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2012 off to a good start compared to 2011

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, Associate Agronomist, Seed Consultants, Inc.

What a difference a year makes! According to a recent USDA crop progress report, as of May 20, 94% of Ohio’s corn crop was planted and 74% of the state’s soybeans were in the ground — a big difference compared to last year when almost nothing had been planted at that point. This year’s planting progress is also well ahead of Ohio’s 5 year average. Some growers planted corn as early as late March and some were sidedressing nitrogen in early May. The unseasonably warm weather in early March created favorable conditions for field work and had farmers in their fields earlier than normal.

It is a common understanding that early planting will provide corn with a higher yield potential; however, planting too early can leave plants vulnerable to adverse weather conditions, such as below freezing temperatures. Some of the earlier planted corn in Ohio was stunted by frost.… Continue reading

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Ohio's Crop Progress – May 21st, 2012

OHIO CROP WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS

WEEK ENDING SUNDAY May 20th, 2012

The average temperature for the State was 63.9 degrees, 2.2 degrees above normal for the week ending Sunday, May 20, 2012. Precipitation averaged 0.24 inches, 0.66 inches below normal. There were 107 modified growing degree days, 14 days above normal. Reporters rated 5.5 days suitable for fieldwork during the seven-day period ending Friday, May 18, 2012. Topsoil moisture was rated 1 percent very short, 15 percent short, 75 percent adequate, and 9 percent surplus.

FIELD ACTIVITIES AND CROP PROGRESS

The state saw dry and warm weather for most of the week. Operators took advantage by completing a lot of field work. These activities included planting corn and soybeans, baling hay, spraying nitrogen on emerged corn, and applying herbicides. Reporters still indicated that field conditions were still slightly dryer than usual for this time of year and will need rain in the coming weeks for all the newly planted crops.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Crop Progress – May 21st, 2012

OHIO CROP WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS

WEEK ENDING SUNDAY May 20th, 2012

The average temperature for the State was 63.9 degrees, 2.2 degrees above normal for the week ending Sunday, May 20, 2012. Precipitation averaged 0.24 inches, 0.66 inches below normal. There were 107 modified growing degree days, 14 days above normal. Reporters rated 5.5 days suitable for fieldwork during the seven-day period ending Friday, May 18, 2012. Topsoil moisture was rated 1 percent very short, 15 percent short, 75 percent adequate, and 9 percent surplus.

FIELD ACTIVITIES AND CROP PROGRESS

The state saw dry and warm weather for most of the week. Operators took advantage by completing a lot of field work. These activities included planting corn and soybeans, baling hay, spraying nitrogen on emerged corn, and applying herbicides. Reporters still indicated that field conditions were still slightly dryer than usual for this time of year and will need rain in the coming weeks for all the newly planted crops.… Continue reading

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