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A look at Biden Administration efforts to incentivize production

By Krista SwansonGary SchnitkeyJonathan Coppess, and Nick Paulson, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois and Carl Zulauf, Ohio State University Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics

The Biden Administration has proposed a $33 billion spending package that includes two proposals to incentivize production of U.S. food crops experiencing a global shortage due to the war in Ukraine. First, loan rates for select commodities would be increased for two years. Second, a $10 per acre crop insurance premium reduction is proposed for double-crop soybeans following winter wheat. The proposal is likely to have limited impact on production.

As part of the Biden Administration’s broad $33 billion proposal to provide aid to Ukraine and address war related problems, the Administration included $500 million for domestic food production assistance to incentivize production of U.S. food crops experiencing a global shortage due to the war in Ukraine.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 255 | The Scoop on Prop 12

Matt and Kolt catch up with Leah Curtis, Policy Counsel and Sr. Director of Member Engagement at Ohio Farm Bureau, to talk about Prop 12 happening in California and its effects for farms all around the country. AgriGold Agronomist, Mitch Greve, talks with Dale about the planting progress happening around the state. Matt then discusses with Andy White of RES Auction Services how the price of new and used equipment keeps rising. Lastly, Dale speaks with Farm Credit Mid-America employees about the Stock the Trailer Program to combat food hunger. All that and more thanks to AgriGold! … Continue reading

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Online Ohio CCA pre-course now available

By Lee Beers, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

Are you interested in becoming a Certified Crop Adviser (CCA), but are intimidated by the exams? You should consider attending the Ohio CCA Pre-Exam Preparation Course offered by Ohio State University Extension. This online course will be available May 16 through Sept. 30, 2022 and will allow you to study and progress at your own pace. 

This course will provide an overview of the CCA program, and help you prepare for the test by covering basic principles in the four competency areas – nutrient management, soil and water management, pest management, and crop management. Even if you are not considering the CCA program, this class is a great basic agronomy course that any farmer, ag retailer, or anyone working with field crops will find valuable. 

For more information about the CCA program, visit

Course contact:

Greg LaBarge, CCA

Ohio State University Extension

Labarge.1@osu.eduContinue reading

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Over half of Ohio’s corn crop planted

Farmers took advantage of planting opportunities in between rain events, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 3 percent short, 61 percent adequate, and 36 percent surplus. Statewide, the average temperature for the week ending May 22 was 67.0 degrees, 4.6 degrees above normal. Weather stations recorded an average of 1.73 inches of precipitation, 0.92 inches above average, with the largest amount of precipitation falling across the Central Lowland region. There were 3.2 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending on May 22.

Farmers described fieldwork activities as including tillage, planting, and applying manure but reported disruptions stemming from early- and late-week rain and wind. Livestock were in favorable condition, benefitting from green grass and warm temperatures. Corn was 52 percent planted, and 24 percent of corn had emerged. Soybean planting progress was 36 percent, while 12 percent were emerged. Oats were 90 percent planted and 72 percent of oats were emerged.… Continue reading

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Planting progress variable throughout the state

Ryan Hiser

We have been fairly fortunate. We have been lucky enough on a couple of occasions to be able to dodge some of those bigger, heavier rains. In the last 2 weeks we have been able to cover just about all of our corn acreage. We are down to about 50 acres left and then we have to decide about replanting 25 acres. If you work up the ground and get a pounding rain, it can turn into concrete, and that is what may have happened to us on that 25 acres. We still have not put any beans in the ground because we have been really dedicated to getting the corn in. The last corn acres still have water ponding.

The seed beans we plant are easy to handle and we plant them into the same conditions as the regular beans. The big thing is cleaning things out and making sure you have the right conditions for germination.… Continue reading

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Springtime is spray time — Here are some tips for better spraying

By Erdal Ozkan

Applying pesticides requires a high level of skill and knowledge. Increases in the size and complexity of sprayers over the years require even more attention to efficiency, efficacy, and safety. Although each crop requires a slightly different approach to the application of pesticides, some general principles apply to almost all spraying situations. Here are my top 10 recommendations (not in a particular order) that will make spraying efficient and effective resulting in a higher level of biological efficacy expected from pesticides applied: 

  1. Select the best nozzle type and size for the job. Although each component of the sprayer plays a role in achieving success in pesticide application, nozzles play the most significant role. Nozzles come in a wide variety of types and sizes. Each type is designed for a specific target and application. Most manufacturers’ catalogs and websites have charts showing which nozzle type is best for a specific job.
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Beware of more risks from tick bites this summer

Spring marks the beginning of tick season and this year, the tick population is expected to surge. 

With it comes the potential for tick bites, which could result in several complications, including Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and in some cases, cause some people to develop an allergy to red meat after being bitten.

Lone star ticks in certain cases, can cause an allergy to red meat after being bitten by the tick. This species of tick entered Ohio over the last decade or so. It has since spread throughout the state, although it is more common in southern Ohio, said Tim McDermott, an educator with Ohio State University Extension, the outreach arm of The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES). 

While the lone star tick prefers a wooded habitat, in many cases, it can also be found along the perimeter of pasture and hay fields that extend into the grass, he said. … Continue reading

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SEC overreach could put family farms at risk

By Zippy Duvall, American Farm Bureau president

Over 2 million farms dot our nation’s landscape, across all 50 states and in territories like Puerto Rico. You can find farmers and ranchers raising nearly every type of crop and livestock to keep our nation fed. You can find us serving our neighbors and communities and employing the latest innovations to improve sustainability. But there’s one place you will not find us, and that is on Wall Street. So why is the Securities and Exchange Commission about to grant itself authority to functionally regulate our family farms and ranches, when in fact we have never been under the SEC’s authority? It’s an alarming question, and one we are facing head on right now.

A little background here — recently the SEC proposed a new rule, “The Enhancement and Standardization of Climate Related Disclosures for Investors,” which would require publicly traded companies to provide climate-related information from their entire value chain in their filings and annual reports.… Continue reading

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MIA gobblers

For the first time in memory, I have ended my turkey hunting before harvesting a bird or the season coming to an end. It’s the third spring in a row where birds are MIA on a farm where turkeys used to thrive; land that we have hunted successfully for more than a quarter century.

It’s no secret that turkey populations are lower across much of Ohio, which the Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODOW) attributes to (wet, cool) spring weather conditions that adversely affects post-hatch turkey poult survival. I can see that reducing the number of turkeys on the landscape, and over the years I have witnessed the same on the farm in question. But a complete collapse of the local population? That’s something I can’t wrap my head around.

Many hunters are pointing to the rise in local populations of bobcats. In fact, a listener of mine just posted an excellent video showing a bobcat that had attacked and chased a pair of turkeys being called in by a hunter.… Continue reading

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The different types of audit opinions 

By Brian Ravencraft

If your agribusiness or farming business ever goes through the audit process, you will have a chance to read the auditor’s report and their opinion. This is certainly unfamiliar territory for most folks. Let me walk you through the four different types of opinions that an auditor can conclude at the end of an audit. 

Unqualified: This type of opinion is often referred as a “clean” opinion. This is the most desired and most common opinion as it states that the entities financial statements are fairly presented and free of material misstatements.

 Qualified: This type of opinion is usually given when the auditor finds material misstatements in the entity’s financial statements. Even though the financial statements contained material misstatements those misstatements do not mis-lead the reader of the statements.

Adverse: This type of opinion is given if material misstatements are found, and those misstatements may mis-lead the reader of the statements.… Continue reading

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Forages in modern small ruminant production systems

By Brady Campbell, Ohio State University Extension small ruminant specialist

Because of their versatility, forages play an important role in modern small ruminant production systems as they can be grazed or harvested and stored as fermented or dry feeds for later use. Forages are unique as they contain structural carbohydrates, in the form of cellulose, that can only be digested by rumen bacteria. When compared with grain-based diets, one disadvantage that is associated with forage-based diets is the number of bacteria that are used to digest forages is much lesser than those used to digest grains (3 billion bacteria per milliliter of rumen fluid in forage-based diets vs. 8 billion bacteria per milliliter of rumen fluid in grain-based diets). Rumen bacteria provide ruminants with a large proportion of daily crude protein intake, therefore, diets that are greater in forages may result in less protein available on a per pound basis when compared with grain-based diets and thus require additional supplementation.… Continue reading

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Corn genetic heritage the strongest driver of chemical defenses against insect feeding

Plants release chemical distress signals when under attack from chewing insects. 

These “911 calls,” as entomologist Esther Ngumbi refers to them, alert other bugs that dinner or a nice place to lay their eggs is available nearby. If predatory or parasitic insects detect the right signal, they swoop in like saviors to make a meal out of — or lay their eggs in — the bodies of the herbivore insects.

A new study explores the factors that contribute to corn plants’ chemical signaling capacity, comparing how different corn varieties respond to herbivory in the presence or absence of a soil bacterium known to promote plant health.

Ngumbi, a professor of entomology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, led the research with U. of I. natural resources and environmental sciences professor Angela Kent and Ph.D. candidate Sierra Raglin, who is the first author of the paper. The findings are reported in the journal Frontiers in Microbiology.… Continue reading

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Managing your crop’s yield potential 

By Mitch Greve, Agrigold agronomist – Ohio

Managing your crop’s yield potential starts with having patience and a detail-oriented plan heading into planting. Furthermore, as the planting season comes to an end it is essential to spend time in the field with the crop. Scouting corn and soybeans from emergence to harvest can help manage the crop’s yield potential. Monitoring weather patterns and a keen eye can help write your yield story. 

A yield story can be broken down into four chapters; emergence scoring, nutrient deficiencies, disease and heat stress, and late season plant health. 

Emergence score and plant vigor 

Within the first few weeks of planting corn and soybeans it is ideal to scout for emergence and plant vigor. Early season scouting will inform how many plants emerged as compared to intended stand, which we refer to as emergence percentage. Having a high emergence percentage is the best-case scenario, but sometimes weather, and biological or mechanical implications can lower that percentage.… Continue reading

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A ride through history of Southern Ohio’s scenic railways

By Mike Ryan, OCJ Field Reporter

It is hard to overstate the enormous importance of the locomotive in the development of the American nation. Ever since the steam locomotive noisily announced its presence on the scene in the second half of the nineteenth century, the “steel highway” has played an integral role in United States economic, social, and industrial life. 

Observing the advent of this modern marvel, American naturalist John Muir rightly observed that the locomotive “annihilated” time and space, creating an extreme increase in the speed of travel and commerce. A symbol of American industry, it fueled the Industrial Revolution and facilitated business and trade on a vast national scale. The railroads altered physical landscapes and stimulated urban development and contributed to the affordability of travel. The train was transformative; it inspired a new spirit and vigor in American society, as 19th century essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson noted when he said, “Railroad iron is a magician’s rod, in its power to evoke the sleeping energies of land and water.” … Continue reading

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Forage harvest management to speed drying and store high quality forage

By Mark SulcJason Hartschuh, CCAAllen Gahler, Ohio State University Extension

It is forage management season in Ohio.

For dairy quality hay, alfalfa should be stored near 40% neutral detergent fiber (NDF) and grass hay crops should have less than 55% NDF, which happens in the boot stage, or before the first flowering heads begin to emerge. Keep in mind also that the cutting, drying, and storing process results in raising NDF levels at least 3 NDF units above what it was in the standing crop at the time of cutting, and that assumes quick drying and ideal harvesting procedures.

Cutting forage for haylage or dry hay is certainly a gamble but waiting for the perfect stretch of weather can end up costing us through large reductions in forage quality as the crop matures and the fiber becomes less digestible. Before cutting though, keep in mind that the soil should be firm enough to support equipment.… Continue reading

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Replanting decisions in corn and soybeans: What to consider

By Osler OrtezLaura LindseyAlexander Lindsey, Ohio State University Extension

Early plantings, cold air and soil temperatures, precipitation, wind, and warmer temperatures during or after planting may lead to reduced stands in planted fields due to factors such as imbibitional chilling, frost damage, soil crusting, and standing water. These factors (or combinations of them) can negatively affect seedling vigor, plant growth, crop establishment, and plant stands. Reduced stands may result in lower yields. If reduced stands are a concern, a potential solution is to replant fields. However, before replanting, here is a list of steps to consider:

Step 1. Wait… Plant stand should be assessed after ‘stable’ and ‘better’ conditions are achieved (e.g., warmer temperatures, good moisture conditions). Often, hasty decisions are not the best.

  • For corn, past work has shown that 50% emergence can be expected following accumulation of 150 soil GDDs (base of 50°F) from the time of planting, about 5-7 days under normal conditions.
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