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The best things can’t be found online

By Matt Reese

Those working in the auction trailer for Harley and Hal Jackson Auctioneers are getting used to the question at sales.

Auctioneer Harley Jackson selling toy tractors.

“Is that the auctioneer out there parking the cars?”

The answer: “Yup, he likes to introduce himself and shake your hand as you’re walking into the sale. He enjoys doing that.”

In today’s virtual age, society has realized many benefits of doing business online, though many parts of life — and some would argue some of the very best parts — can be lost online. 

“I’m an old-style auctioneer. I’ve been in the business for 32 years, so the in-person live auctions are kind of special to me, because that’s what I grew up with. I like to shake hands with the people that are coming to the sales. I like to be able to thank them. It’s just about being personable.… Continue reading

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Log Cabin Days coming mid-September

Shorter days, cooler temperatures and sweet apple cider usher in the fall season, and with it Log Cabin Days at Hochstetler Log Homes in Loudonville, at 552 State Route 95, Loudonville, OH 44842. Join in the family friendly fun Friday, Sept. 16 and Saturday, Sept. 17. One of the highlights of the event will be the log home tour, where visitors are able to go through up to 8 log homes and discover the casual, relaxing lifestyle that characterizes log home living. This self-guided tour is available for a small donation which supports the American Cancer Society.

   The two-day family oriented event has something for everyone and will also include:

  • Demonstrations of lumberjack skills, ax throwing, wood chopping and cross cut sawing
  • 19th century log home related trades such as hand hewing, wood carving, furniture making, gun building, spinning and rug braiding
  • Log home building.

Many activities will encourage audience participation as well as offer a lineup of excellent seminar speakers.… Continue reading

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SGD Wheat Yield Contest

Seed Genetics Direct, the Eastern Corn Belt’s fastest-growing independent seed company, recently announced the winners of their annual Wheat Yield Contest. Cunningham and Foor LLC out of Washington Court House, Ohio earned top bragging rights with a first-place finish of 144.11 bushels per acre yield. Placing second was Jacob Cates of Williamsburg, In. with a yield of 93.78 bushels per acre. Gary Fritz of Modoc, In. earned third-place with a yield of 90.5 bushels per acre.

“We are beyond impressed with the entries we received and the winning yields!” said Todd Jeffries, vice president of Seed Genetics Direct. “The results reflect the hard work and tenacity of farmers. Our growers access top-of-the-line genetics and consistently adopt new practices to improve their wheat quality and yields.”

Cunningham and Foor planted AGI 217B, which also has the top four-year yield average in Ohio Wheat Performance Trials, on Sept. 29 at 1.5 million seeds per acre.… Continue reading

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Soybean yields higher than expected in bearish report

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Following the noon report release, corn was down 8 cents, soybeans down 30 cents, and wheat down 25 cents. Prior to the report, corn was up 3 cents, soybeans up 15 cents, and wheat down 19 cents. 

Note that with this August report, NASS is no longer using farmer surveys to provide yield estimates. The corn and soybean yield estimates will be a best guess scenario by the World Outlook Board. The Annual Pro Farmer U.S. Midwest crop tour will take place in two weeks.

Weather continues to be a major market driver for the grains. The central and western Midwest have been among the dries areas of the cornbelt. During the past two weeks there have been multiple shifts in forecast expectations of warm and dry or frequent showers. The American and European weather models have sometimes detailed forecasts which are opposite of each other.… Continue reading

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“No solar!!” does little to preserve farmland

By Matt Reese

I just drove by another cardboard sign duct-taped to a wooden stake with the words “No solar” scrawled out in black magic marker along the road. I wonder if the maker of the sign considered the implications of the sign’s request for local landowners. 

Make no mistake, I have no great love for solar (nor do I own enough land to have a stake in the game). The battle for the preservation of farmland is a crucial issue, and Ohio is on the front lines. Houses, strip malls, solar panels, wind energy, landfills, industry, roadways, waste treatment — the list of potential demands for land could go on almost endlessly. There is a valid need for each use, but in reality, there is only so much land.

American Farmland Trust (AFT) recently released a new report, Farms Under Threat 2040: Choosing an Abundant Futuretaking a look at the loss of farmland around the country.Continue reading

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Ukraine situation and other market factors to watch

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

Four ships loaded with wheat and corn left Ukraine on Friday of this past week. Another four loaded over the weekend. However, it will still take another 500 to 1,000 ships pending the average size of each vessel to move the remaining grain still left in storage there. The deal negotiated 3 weeks ago set a goal of loading three ships per day out of Black Sea ports, with a renewal of the agreement every 120 days. While the deal has potential, logistically it is not a guarantee all the old crop in storage will be moved in time to provide enough room for the new crop being harvested.

It is still uncertain how many acres will be planted there this fall and next spring. Insurance costs to move grain out of Ukraine by ship has increased by 20 times, which will be passed down to the producer in that country.… Continue reading

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More practical soil health tips

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

After being on the road teaching (Iowa, Pennsylvania), I am home recovering from COVID.  Here are the last 15 tips from my factsheet: “25 Tips to Growing and Managing Cover Crops”.

Tip 11: Soil Microbes (especially bacteria) are like soluble bags of fertilizer and directly feed plant.  There is about 1000-2000X more soil microbes associated with live roots than bare soil.  Plants supply 25-45% of their total carbohydrate root reserves to feed soil microbes which retrieve soil nutrients more efficiently than plant roots hairs. Bonus: Beneficial microbes love sugar in small amounts, so add 1# sugar/Acre to nutrient, herbicide, fungicide spray applications.

Jim Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

Tip 12:  Use grasses with fibrous roots (cereal rye, oats, barley) before soybeans to maximize phosphorous uptake. Cereal rye controls weeds through competition for light and nutrients, allelopathy (natural herbicides in stem and leaves), and reduces diseases by keeping the soil drier due to transpiration (loss of water to the atmosphere).… Continue reading

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Manure Nutrient Management Day

Crawford Soil and Water Conservation District, in conjunction with Crawford-OSU Extension, will be hosting a Manure Nutrient Management Field Day on August 30. The event will be held at the Scott-Reinhard Seed’s Warehouse at 2030 State Route 4, just south of Bucyrus. The day will start at 9 a.m. and continue until about 3 p.m. With nationally known speakers. Jenifer Yost, a Research Soil Scientist with USDA-ARS from Temple, Texas will be speaking about soil health and the benefits of swine and dairy manure. Scott Shearer from The Ohio State University will showcase some of the latest technologies being researched and developed. 

Other topics will include utilizing poultry litter by Taylor Dill, OSU Extension. Composting Manure and its benefits, Eric Richer, OSU extension. Learning to understand your manure analysis, cover crops, and the latest on H2Ohio, EQIP, and spreading regulations. Field trials with both liquid and dry handling and spreading equipment will be showcased in the afternoon.Continue reading

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 264 | Ohio Crop Progress

Matt is joined with Sam Custer of OSU Extension and Jerry Bambauer a farmer and Ohio Soybean Association Member to talk about Crop Progress around the state of Ohio. Dale chats with Kyla McCoy, Patrick Miller, and Mekenzie Jolliff all GrowNextGen Staff about their time at the Ohio State Fair. Matt catches up with Matt Konieczka of Bane-Welker to talk about preparing for the harvest season. Jerry Happy an Ohio Pork Producer sits down with Matt to discuss the Rib Off at the Ohio State Fair and the pork industry. All this and more thanks to AgriGold!

00:00 Intro and OCJ/OAN Staff Update

17:12 GrowNextGen – Ohio State Fair

31:02 Bane-Welker  

35:53 Jerry Happy – Ohio Pork Producer

39:12 Closing   … Continue reading

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August heat and rains

Scattered storms and hot days continued to dominate observed weather conditions during the previous week, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 4 percent very short, 22 percent short, 69 percent adequate, and 5 percent surplus. Statewide, the average temperature for the week ending August 7 was 76.3 degrees, 4.3 degrees above normal. Weather stations recorded an average of 0.92 inches of precipitation, consistent with previous year averages. There were 5.0 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending August 7.

Last week’s field activities included fungicide applications on late-planted corn and soybeans. Corn silking progress was 91 percent complete, corn dough progress was 45 percent complete, and corn condition was rated 59 percent good to excellent. Soybeans blooming progress was 90 percent and pod setting progress reached 63 percent. Fifty-six percent of soybean plants were reported as being in good to excellent condition. … Continue reading

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Rains keeping crops progressing

Kurt Wyler

The past few weeks have been pretty muggy and we have been getting a lot of small showers scattered out every few days. It has made making dry hay pretty challenging. We have been wanting to make it dry, but we have been having to roll it up and wet wrap a lot of it. We’d like to do square bales but it has been hazy and the dew didn’t really get dried off until noon and that doesn’t give you a very big window. We thought getting it off now was better than letting it stand. The dry weather last month definitely did affect our orchardgrass tonnage. It was stunted and has not really bounced back. The alfalfa did not really get affected any.  

The crops are looking a lot better now. With the rains, corn is looking great. A lot of fungicide is starting to go on in this area.… Continue reading

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Active Soybean Cyst Nematode management: SCN root check

By Dr. Horacio Lopez-Nicora and Greg LaBarge, CPAg/CCA, Adapted from C.O.R.N. 2022-25

Soybean cyst nematode is silently gaining territory in Ohio and SCN numbers are rising. While soybean fields infested with SCN may not show above ground symptoms or look sick, the presence of SCN females attached to soybean roots can be detected six to eight weeks after planting. We encourage Ohio soybean growers to actively manage SCN by checking roots for the presence of SCN. If you do not know if you have SCN in your field, you can dig out roots (walk your fields with a shovel and dig out plants every 30 to 50 paces), gently remove the soil without breaking the roots (a bucket with water may help separate soil from roots), and check for the presence of SCN females on the roots. The SCN females attached to roots are initially white to cream, turning yellow and eventually brown in color.… Continue reading

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Dicamba drift reminders

By Alyssa Essman, Weed Scientist, Adapted from C.O.R.N. 2022-25

As in years past, we are hearing reports of soybean damage caused by off-target movement of plant growth regulator (PGR) herbicides. Off-target movement can be classified as primary or secondary. Primary herbicide movement takes place at the time of application, also referred to as particle drift. Nozzle type, droplet size, sprayer speed and other management factors affect particle drift, along with wind speed. Particle drift is not influenced by herbicide formulation. Plant injury from primary movement typically has a distinct pattern, often occurring along field edges closest to the treated field and becoming less noticeable farther from the source. Secondary herbicide movement occurs after the time of application and is often used in reference to vapor drift (volatility) or wind erosion. This source of off-target spread is extremely problematic and can be very difficult to predict. There is not always a tell-tale pattern of injury.… Continue reading

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Encouraging new campaign from Beck’s

Beck’s, founded on honoring God and helping farmers succeed, unveils a new marketing campaign, “Just Believe,” with messaging driven from Bible verse Mark 5:36, “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.” 

“Our purpose of honoring God and helping farmers succeed is the heart and soul of Beck’s,” said Scott Beck, president of Beck’s. “Like many of our customers, faith, family, and farming are at the forefront of everything we do. And it’s what keeps this unwavering industry moving forward.” 

Driven by weather and fluctuating commodity prices, farming is one of the most dangerous and unpredictable professions in our country. The campaign “Just Believe” reflects on the emotional roller-coaster of farming. From the highs of a record harvest to weeks of no rain. As inflation and interest rates increase, and input costs rise, this faith filled message encourages farmers to keep going and remember that God made them with purpose. 

“Beck’s is bigger than seed, bigger than all the buildings, and bigger than being the third-largest retail seed brand in the United States,” said Ashley Fischer, marketing communications manager at Beck’s.… Continue reading

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Ohio Corn & Wheat hosts Colombian trade team

Ohio Corn & Wheat (OCW) hosted an international trade team from Colombia in partnership with U.S. Wheat Associateson July 27, 2022. The team studied soft red winter wheat and evaluated milling quality during their visit.

The Agricultural Research Service United States Department of Agriculture’s Soft Red Wheat Lab in Wooster, staffed by Byung-Kee Baik, hosted the team to discuss milling characteristics and Ohio wheat quality. The visit also featured stops at Farquhar Farms near Jeromesville and Schroeder Family Farms near Crestline. At the latter stop, a Wheat Farmer Roundtable featured a tour of the grain facility, sharing wheat samples and discussing Ohio wheat operations.

“This is now the second trade team we’ve hosted this summer, and it fully reaffirms the value of the in-person visit,” said Tadd Nicholson, OCW Executive Director. “We’ve demonstrated what Ohio and the U.S. have to offer in terms of our commodities. For engaging potential buyers with our commodity organizations, that face-to-face experience is irreplaceable to help drive exports.”… Continue reading

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A look at 2021 corn marketing

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

The market is in a holding pattern until more is known about the national yield. Weather forecasts for extreme heat and limited precipitation over the next two weeks is a concern. The upcoming August 12 USDA report is one of the more important of the year because it will release the first satellite yield estimates and include a planted acres update. Plus, the market is still wondering if grain will be shipped out of Ukraine by Black Sea routes. With all of these unknowns, substantial price risk in either direction remains.

2021 corn marketing summary

Following provides an overall summary of the trades I made for the 2021 crop year. To evaluate the full potential of a marketing year, it is important to analyze the three variables that make up the cash price received: futures, basis and carry.


For the crop years 2013 through 2019, the most profitable marketing approach was to be 100% priced on futures before harvest.… Continue reading

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Stink bugs in soybeans

By Dr. Kelley Tillman and Andy Michael, OSU Extension Entomologist, Adapted from C.O.R.N. 2022-25

There are many species of stink bugs that feed on soybean including brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), green, red shouldered, and brown stink bugs. Stink bugs injure soybean in the latter half of the season after flowering by feeding on pods and seeds, resulting in lower yields and reductions in seed quality, the latter being a major concern when soybean is grown for seed or food grade purposes.

Begin scouting for stink bugs when the soybean plant reaches the R2 stage (full bloom, when the plant has an open flower at one of the two upper-most nodes on the main stem). Stink bug feeding can cause economic loss from the R3 stage (pod set) to the R6 stage (full seed set).  Using a sweep net, sample in at least 5 locations in smaller fields, more in larger fields.… Continue reading

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