Armyworms may still be at work in fields

By Andy Michel, Curtis Young, CCA, Kelley Tilmon, Ohio State University Extension

We received many reports of true armyworm infestations in wheat, barley, and corn. These are black or green caterpillars with stripes along the side and orange heads. In the spring, true armyworm moths migrate from the south and lay eggs in grasses such as forage and weed grasses, winter wheat and barley, and rye cover crops. When the eggs hatch, the larvae can significantly damage wheat and barley before then moving to young corn. Usually, moth flights occur in April, but we may have had a second peak the first or second week of May—it’s likely the caterpillars feeding now are from this later flight. Right now, wheat, barley, and corn should be inspected for true armyworm populations. Armyworms like to hide during the day and feed at night, so scouting should occur at dusk or dawn, and/or on cloudy days.… Continue reading

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Watch for early-season crop development challenges

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

The 2020 growing season continues to be challenging for Ohio’s farmers. Wet spring conditions with large rainfall events have created some issues that will continue to impact Ohio’s crops throughout the growing season.

Adverse weather conditions have significantly impacted emergence and early crop development. In some areas of the state, fields were planted early and then exposed to weather extremes such as saturated soils and freezing temperatures below 28 degrees F. In other parts of Ohio, fields planted into tough conditions in mid-May struggled to develop and were eventually replanted. Anyone who has driven around the state in the last few weeks knows that poor emergence, variable emergence and thin plant stands are a common sight.

Not only have adverse spring field conditions impacted final plant stands, but some issues that exist as a result of the wet weather will linger throughout the season.… Continue reading

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Calcium and manganese deficiency

By John Kempf and James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Services

Calcium and manganese are two soil abundant elements that are often not as plant available and may be deficient in plant cells. Calcium is used in cell wall membranes and often becomes limiting during critical pollination periods when cells are rapidly dividing. Manganese is used in photosynthesis to split the water molecule (H20) into H+ and OH.

Grain and fruit size are determined by calcium after pollination. The cell division process proceeds rapidly, lasting 5-40 days but most grain crops have a 10-14 day cell division window. Cell division occurs exponentially (2-4-8-16-32-64 etc.) as cells divide so calcium may become deficient quickly after pollination. After cell division, grain or fruit fill occurs as the cell is filled with proteins, sugars, and water.  A lack of calcium can limit cell division, grain or fruit size, and reduce yields.… Continue reading

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Early season corn considerations

By Harold Watters, Ohio State University Extension agronomist

OK, I finished replanting my corn last week, only about three weeks ahead of last year. Oh, and for my planting window, now I have had four periods of about 24 hours each. And for this last planting opportunity, conditions were finally fit to actually plant well. One of my farmer cooperator buddies told me this year he has never used so much technology to plant so poorly.

Poor stands – Compaction and Pythium

The two most common seedling challenges this year were compaction and Pythium. We overworked the soil, this spring and last year both. Poor soil structure leads to soil compaction and crusting. I often quote Sjoerd Duiker, agronomist at Penn State University. This time I’ll just give you his link: Pythium is another problem — our seed treatments only work for so long. This year with cold soils, crusting and excessive rains at the wrong time created a great opportunity for this disease.… Continue reading

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PFR is more than just research

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff

At the Beck’s PFR (Practical Farm Research) site near London, Ohio PFR is more than just research.

“The Ohio PFR site strives to be a respected member of the community and accurate representation of the Beck family,” said Jared Chester, Practical Farm Research Location Lead. “The London, Ohio PFR location includes 130 acres of replicated plots, along with another 85 acres of testing in larger field scale settings that are managed with The Ohio State University.”

Jared Chester, Practical Farm Research Operator

Beck’s PFR locations are representative of the agricultural production commonly found in the area.

“The London site has 70 different replicated studies which include: corn, soybeans, wheat, and double crop soybeans. In addition, we have some demonstration plots that are conducted for training and observation only,” Chester said. “We are using replicated testing to answer questions and provide recommendations to help farmers succeed.”

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U.S. soy shoes donated to frontline workers

U.S. Soy is helping bring comfort to health care professionals who are working tirelessly on the frontlines during COVID-19. Okabashi, an American company that counts on U.S. soy for all its sandals, pledged to donate up to 10,000 pairs of soy-based sandals to health care workers for every order placed through its website or Zappos.

“We’ve already donated over 5,000 pairs so far, and still counting!” said Okabashi President Kim Falkenhayn. “We are sending them all over the country. Now more than ever, we’re all in this together.”

Only 2% of shoe companies operate in the U.S., and Okabashi is proud to source American materials, including U.S.-grown soybean oil. Okabashi committed to producing their footwear with sustainable and renewable materials using soybean oil to displace petroleum. The company’s shoes are approximately 45% U.S. soy by weight. U.S. Soy meets Okabashi’s high standards for performance, offering both strength and softness, as well as qualified them to be recognized as a USDA Certified Biobased Product in the USDA’s BioPreferred Program.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast |Ep. 158 | Dicamba Debacle

As Quarantine begins to come to a close, county fairs begin to make plans to open with the rest of the state. Matt, Kolt, Dusty and Dale host this week and talk about the current hot button topic of dicamba products. Dusty interviews Joe Taylor for more information in the issue. Kolt features an interview with Katey Brattin from the Wendt Group about a product they have released for county fair sale use.… Continue reading

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Changes in status of dicamba product labels for Xtend soybeans — a recap

By Mark Loux, Ohio State University Extension, State Weed Specialist

On June 3, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in a case concerning the use of dicamba on Xtend soybeans. This decision voided the labels for XtendiMax, Engenia, and FeXapan that allow use on Xtend soybeans. Tavium was not included in this decision, because it was not approved for use when the case was initially filed. Several great articles covering this decision can be found here on the OSU Ag Law blog ( EPA issued a statement on June 8 providing further guidance about what this decision means for use of dicamba the rest of this season. The gist of this decision was the following:

“EPA’s order addresses sale, distribution, and use of existing stocks of the three affected dicamba products — XtendiMax with vapor grip technology, Engenia, and FeXapan.

  1. Distribution or sale by any person is generally prohibited except for ensuring proper disposal or return to the registrant.
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Determining forage moisture content

By Wayne County Extension

Forage maturity/stage of development is often cited as the number one factor that determines forage quality, but for any stored forage, moisture content at harvest is a close second. Moisture content drives what happens to that forage after it is removed from the field, whether quality is maintained or degraded. Improper moisture content can reduce storage life.

The most common method of determining forage moisture is some type of visual appraisal whereby a forage sample is either twisted together or squeezed into a ball and then released. How quickly that twisted sample unravels, or the ball falls apart determines if the forage is too wet, too dry, or ready for harvest. While a lot of good quality stored forage has been made using this method, errors sometimes get made and forage quality is compromised, or forage is lost. For those producers looking for more certainty in determining forage moisture there are some tools available that can help.… Continue reading

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Ohio dicama registrations expire June 30

By Kolt Buchenroth

In a statement issued Thursday, the Ohio Department of Agriculture announced that all dicamba products in Ohio must be applied before July 1st, 2020.

This restriction comes after a U.S. Court of Appeals decision that vacated the federal registrations of three dicamba products on June 3rd.

“This decision has caused tremendous uncertainty for soybean producers and pesticide dealers during an agronomically critical time of year,” the statement reads. “It is estimated that around 40 to 50 percent of the soybean crop planted in Ohio are dicamba tolerant varieties.”

The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Final Cancellation Order  details which circumstances existing supply of the three impacted products can be used. While the order allows the impacted products to be applied through the end of July, ODA has determined that the registration on the products expires on June 30th and cannot be renewed. The products will no longer be registered or available after June 30th of this year.… Continue reading

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Are crown rot and PMD looming in corn?

By Luke Schulte, Beck’s Hybrids

As I write this, the rain continues to inundate many corn and soybean fields throughout the state. Unfortunately, many Ohio farmers will likely find their corn crop in one the following scenarios:

  1. Those that could plant early but have since endured saturating rains.
  2. Those that were unable to plant early, but due to the calendar, may have had to push field conditions rather than wait for an ideal planting situation.

Either scenario presents the increased potential for the corn root system to be exposed to infections that challenge staygreen and natural maturation.

Crown rot in corn results in plants that prematurely die. Not only does this affect final yield but often standability is impeded as well. Crown rot is caused by various species of Fusarium and Pythium, which are commonly found in our soils. The crown area serves as the “highway” for transporting water and nutrients from the roots to the remainder of the plant.… Continue reading

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Bipartisan Growing Climate Solutions Act introduced

The bipartisan Growing Climate Solutions Act was introduced in the U.S. Senate, calling it an important step toward reducing agricultural carbon emissions.

The legislation, introduced by Senator Mike Braun (R-IN) and Senate Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), along with Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), encourages sustainable farming practices by making it easier for farmers to participate in carbon markets.

“American family farmers and ranchers are ready to help fight climate change, but meaningful and sustainable changes are not inexpensive or easy to implement. Carbon credit exchanges can provide them with a market-based system to finance those improvements,” said Rob Larew, with the National farmers Union. “It is very encouraging to see legislators work across the aisle to provide certainty to those looking to participate in carbon credit marketplaces. In doing so, the Growing Climate Solutions Act is an important step toward strong and comprehensive climate policy that both provides farmers of all sizes with the resources they need to mitigate and adapt to climate change as well as recognizes the vital public good that comes from those efforts.”… Continue reading

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EPA provides clarification on Dicamba use

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff.

Clarification and further guidance was provided on Monday, June 8th, by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), for farmers and retailers, regarding the use of certain dicamba products that have been in question since June 3rd, when those product’s federal registration was vacated by a federal court.  According to the ruling, The EPA received a large amount of unsolicited comments regarding the courts decision and resulting impacts on agriculture.

Last Wednesday, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the product registration of three dicamba-based products, incuding: Monsanto’s XtendiMax, DuPont’s FeXapan, and BASF’s Engenia; as conditional use pesticides for post-emergent applications. The court held that when the EPA conditionally amend the registrations for an additional two years, the process they used violated the provisions of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (“FIFRA”).… Continue reading

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Ohio Soybean Council announces Board of Trustees election

The Ohio Soybean Council (OSC) Board of Trustees has four district seats up for election this year. All eligible candidates interested in running for the OSC Board must obtain at least 15 valid signatures on the petition available at

All petitions must be submitted to the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) by mail, and must be postmarked no later than July 6, 2020 and received by July 13, 2020.

OSC is the Qualified State Soybean Board for Ohio and manages state soybean checkoff dollars. The OSC Board is made up of farmer volunteers who direct the investments of checkoff dollars to improve the profitability of Ohio soybean farmers.

Districts up for election are:

District 3: Ashland, Ashtabula, Columbiana, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Huron, Lorain, Mahoning, Medina, Portage, Richland, Summit, and Trumbull Counties
Incumbent Jeff Magyar is eligible to run for another term
District 4: Defiance, Paulding, and Van Wert Counties
Incumbent Mike Heffelfinger is eligible to run for another term
District 6: Crawford, Seneca, and Wyandot Counties
Incumbent Mike Mutchler is eligible to run for another term
District 11: Clark, Greene, and Madison Counties
Incumbent Bob Suver is eligible to run for another term

To be eligible for election to the OSC Board, you must live in a county in one of the districts listed and be a soybean producer engaged in the growing of soybeans in the State of Ohio who owns or shares the ownership and risk of loss of soybeans at any time during the three-year period immediately preceding November 15 of the current year.… Continue reading

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2020 Cab Cams showed unique spring conditions

By Matt Reese

In a spring that has been just about as strange as recent national events, corn and soybean planting progress was widely divergent, generating some head scratches along the way. Minnesota was a national leader in early 2020 corn planting progress for goodness’ sake!

Ohio has been behind nationally all spring. While northwest Ohio has been a regular recipient of wet, cold, delayed planting seasons in recent years, the region led the state in planting progress. At the same time, the farmers in central and southern Ohio, who have been blessed with some of the better planting seasons recently, really struggled in 2020. Those who were able to get planted in April and early May were plagued with temperatures more in line with February, though soil conditions were nearly ideal. In some areas, farms went straight from scouting for frost damage to scouting for flood damage after big rains swamped the dry fields.… Continue reading

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Corn planting nearing completion, soybeans not far behind

Dry weather and warm temperatures led to much field activity throughout the week, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Due to improved weather and drier fields, farmers continued replanting corn and soybeans. Average temperatures for the week were approximately 5 degrees above historical normals and the entire state averaged close to a half inch of precipitation. There were 5.2 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 7. In addition to replanting crops, farmers side-dressed corn, sprayed herbicides, baled hay, and spread manure. Topsoil moisture decreased from 30 percent surplus last week to 12 percent surplus this week. Soybean planting progress was 83 percent, 8 percentage points ahead of the five-year average. Corn planting progress was 94 percent, ahead of the five year average by 9 percentage points. Sixty-one percent of corn was considered good or excellent and 75 percent of pasture and range was considered good or excellent compared to 59 percent last year.… Continue reading

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Ohio Soybean State of Soy Webinar

The Ohio Soybean Council will be sponsoring a Ohio Soybean State of Soy webinar on Tuesday, June 9 beginning at 10:00 a.m. Ben Brown, Assistant Professor of Professional Practice in Agricultural Risk Management in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics at The Ohio State University will be the featured speaker.

During this webinar, Ben Brown will speak on soybean market fundamentals, trade update and assistance programs. There is no cost to attend this program. For more information Click here.… Continue reading

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Federal court rules dicamba use unlawful

On June 3, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled to vacate registrations of three dicamba herbicides. The 56-page opinion held the Trump administration’s 2018 registration of that pesticide and related ones to be unlawful, and disallowed it. Over 25 million pounds of the dicamba was set to be sprayed on roughly 60 million acres of resistant soybeans and cotton this summer using the now-unlawful pesticides.

There will certainly be legal wrangling ahead, but there could be real consequences for weed control this summer if the ruling stands, said University of Illinois weed scientist Aaron Hager to DTN.

“Given that there are many thousands, if not millions, of Xtend acres that have not been treated yet, if this label is fully vacated right now and there is no appeal and stay from the courts, farmers will have to scramble to come up with alternative solutions,” Hagar told DTN.Continue reading

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