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Wheat harvest ahead of last year, average

Continued hot and dry weather raised concerns among some farmers about deteriorating crop conditions, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 17 percent very short, 49 percent short, 33 percent adequate, and 1 percent surplus. Statewide, the average temperature for the week ending July 3 was 72.1 degrees, 0.7 degrees above normal. Weather stations recorded an average of 0.41 inches of precipitation, 0.76 inches below average. There were 6.6 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending on July 3.

Reporters across the State indicated that corn and soybean crops are displaying signs of stress, a consequence of continued below-average precipitation. Corn and soybean conditions declined slightly from the previous week. Livestock were in good condition. Corn had yet to advance to the silking stage. Soybeans were 95 percent emerged and 5 percent of plants were blooming. Oats were 82 percent headed.… Continue reading

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Maximize remaining yield potential in 2022

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

The 2022 growing season has already provided growers with several challenges. Learning from these challenges and making sound management decisions throughout the remainder of the growing season will be critical to achieving top-end yield potential. 

Adverse weather conditions have significantly impacted planting date, emergence, and early crop development. While early planting favors high yields, it does not guarantee them. Even with delayed planting growers can still achieve high yields depending on several other factors. The key to achieving top-end yield potential will be sound management decisions moving forward.

Not only have adverse spring field conditions impacted planning and early crop development, but some issues that exist as a result of the wet weather will linger throughout the season. Seedlings have struggled to get established in crusted soils, saturated soils, and flooded areas of fields. Compaction, root restrictions, and damage to plants will hinder crop development throughout the growing season.… Continue reading

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4-H Clover’s CODE: Creating Opportunities Designed for Everyone

By Sally A. McClaskey, Ohio 4-H Youth Development

For 4-H members, summer is all about camping, project work and county fairs, but for many 4-H’ers, this summer will also include the opportunity to explore coding, computers and creativity.

Clovers CODE (Creating Opportunities Designed for Everyone) began in 2019 as part of the Apple Community Education Initiative and the effort to introduce youth to problem-solving, computer literacy and coding through hands-on activities.

This summer, 4-H professionals offering Clovers CODE programs will be at overnight camps, day camp programs, pop-up events, and county fairs. According to Mark Light, 4-H STEM specialist, technology-related 4-H programs are growing in popularity. “STEM-based projects are the second largest project area in Ohio. Kids use technology every day, not just during the school year. Our goal is to help them continue that creative process through the summer.”

Youth at the William H. Adams Community Center in Columbus started with Clovers CODE in January.… Continue reading

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Nominations open for 2023 Farm Bureau Farm Dog of the Year

Farmers are invited to submit nominations for the 2023 Farm Bureau Farm Dog of the Year contest, supported by Purina. This is the fifth year of the contest, which celebrates farm dogs and the many ways they support farmers and ranchers in producing nutritious food for families and their pets across America.

The contest opened in January and the nomination deadline has been extended to July 15. The grand prize winner – Farm Bureau Farm Dog of the Year – will win a year’s worth of Purina dog food and $5,000 in prize money. The winner will be recognized at a Farm Dog of the Year award ceremony at the American Farm Bureau Federation Convention in January 2023. Up to four regional runners-up* will each win $1,000 in prize money. 

The 2023 Farm Dog of the Year will also be featured in a professionally produced video. The profile of 2022 Farm Dog of the Year Fit can be viewed at reading

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Forage options for planting after wheat

By Mark SulcBill Weiss, Ohio State University Extension

Some producers may be considering planting a supplemental forage crop after winter wheat grain harvest for various reasons. Some areas of the state are becoming very dry. In many areas, the wet weather this spring resulted in ample forage supply, but good to high-quality forage is in short supply because of the wet weather that delayed harvesting until the crop was mature, or it resulted in rained-on hay that lowered quality.

The forage grass options all require adequate nitrogen to maximize yield potential, either as fertilizer or manure (about 60 lbs of actual available nitrogen per acre).  Check any potential herbicide restrictions from the previously planted crop and consider herbicides used after wheat and before planting these annual forages. 

Chopping and ensiling or wet wrapping are the best mechanical harvest alternatives for most of the options listed. Wilting is usually necessary.… Continue reading

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Farm Bureau backs Ohio Supreme Court justices

On June 30, Ohio Farm Bureau was part of a group of Ohio’s largest business organizations that visited Miller Family Farm to announce their endorsement of Sharon Kennedy for chief justice of the Ohio Supreme Court and Pat DeWine and Pat Fischer for re-election to the Ohio Supreme Court.

During the event, Ohio’s business community, including Ohio Farm Bureau, NFIB, Ohio Business Roundtable, Ohio Chamber of Commerce and Ohio Manufacturers’ Association stressed how it relies on a predictable and consistent Supreme Court, as it allows companies, both small and large, to plan and grow for the future. According to the groups, Justices Kennedy, DeWine, and Fischer are the candidates the business community believes Ohio needs to protect the Supreme Court from judicial activism that leads to unpredictability, and if any one of these candidates is not protected, Ohio will be in grave danger of damaging its national economic competitiveness.

“In a time of so much uncertainty in our agricultural markets, our supply chains and food channels, Ohio’s agriculture community needs a consistent Ohio Supreme Court,” said Adam Sharp, Ohio Farm Bureau Executive Vice President.… Continue reading

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GrowNextGen Tour highlights

By Matt Reese

Courtesy of the Ohio Soybean Council, the Ohio Ag Net and Ohio’s Country Journal will be helping showcase agriculture to students around the state through the 2022 GrowNextGen Tour.

GrowNextGen was launched in 2014 with funding from the soybean checkoff through the Ohio Soybean Council and Ohio soybean farmers. The program provides teachers with free, high quality STEM units and lessons that bring agriculture principles and practices into the science classroom. With a primary focus on biology, chemistry, food science and environmental science standards, GrowNextGen includes e-learning courses and a network of educators and industry leaders to answer questions and provide resources to support the lessons. The goal of the program is to increase student interest in careers related to food productionCareer videos and discussion guides describing career pathways allow teachers to give students a look into multiple careers they might not have considered.

Ronda Uresti-Forman and Kathleen Moore are pipetting their soy biodiesel they created to fuel their pop-pop boats at the July 28 GrowNextGen workshop and tour stop at Global Impact STEM Academy.
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Alfalfa fertility needs

By Brooks Warner, Ohio State University Extension Ag and Natural Resources Educator, Scioto County

Alfalfa is known as the queen of forages for its ability to produce incredible amounts of high-protein forage in an array of different environments. Proper management of alfalfa stands can help producers maintain the highest quality and yielding alfalfa for their livestock enterprises. In Ohio, alfalfa thrives in our growing conditions and producers can potentially harvest five times in a growing season. For maximum yield and a healthy alfalfa stand, proper soil fertility is crucial. Soil tests are crucial in understanding which nutrients we are deficient in, and with the price of fertilizer and high-quality alfalfa, it is important to know if we are applying too much or not enough fertilizer.

Soil pH

Highest yielding alfalfa is grown in soil with a pH of 6.7 (Mclean and Brown, 1984). In southeastern Ohio we tend to have low pH soil, so applications of lime are regularly needed.… Continue reading

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Algal bloom prediction low again for Lake Erie

The 2022 algal bloom is expected to have a low severity index of 3.5, according to the final forecast from the National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration. This forecast uses an ensemble of different models, which consider phosphorus loading into the lake during the spring and early summer.
If realized, this will be the fourth year out of the past seven that the algal bloom will be rated less than 4 on a scale of 1 (mild) to 10 (severe).

Recent soil test data from The Fertilizer Institute found that the number of soil samples tested for Ohio increased from about 69,000 in 2001 to nearly 274,000 in 2020. Over the same period, the median soil test phosphorus levels dropped from 38 to 26 parts per million (Mehlich 3).

With the expansion of the H2Ohio water quality initiative and the growth of the Ohio Agriculture Conservation Initiative certification program, both designed to help farmers find more and better nutrient management practices, efforts will continue to advance across Ohio, according to Jordan Hoewischer, director of water quality and research with Ohio Farm Bureau.… Continue reading

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Bullish soybeans

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Soybean acres were 2.1 million acres below trade estimates.

Just after the noon report release, corn was down 10 cents, soybeans up 12-15 cents, and wheat  down 4 cents. Prior to the reports, corn was down 15-17 cents, soybeans down 13-20 cents, and wheat down 8 cents. Non-threatening Midwest weather along with disappointing weekly U.S. grain sales contributed to the price weakness for grains prior to the noon report release.

The USDA report day for today consists of two reports, 2022 US acres and June 1 U.S. grain stocks. This report day has been volatile in recent years. USDA will not publish supply and demand tables today. The next S/D report or WASDE, will be July 12. 

U.S. acres: corn 89.9 million acres, soybeans 88.3 million acres, and wheat 47.1 million acres. 

U.S. grain stocks as of June 1: corn 4.35 billion bushels, soybeans 971 million bushels, and wheat 660 million bushels.… Continue reading

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Ice cream!

By Matt Reese

Ahhhh ice cream!
June is dairy month, so it seems like an excellent reason to enjoy ice cream with a bit more regularity than usual. And, in 1984, President Ronald Reagan decided July should be National Ice Cream Month, with the third Sunday of the month being National Ice Cream Day. As such, it seems perfectly reasonable that June’s increased ice cream consumption should obviously be continued thorough next month as well.
As it stands, ice cream is a dietary staple for many farms around Ohio. I know for many years the Schwan’s delivery guy had a standing weekly order with my grandpa to refill the deep freeze in the old summer kitchen on the farm. Grandpa was not an agrarian outlier.
Carrying on the family tradition, I am a guy who certainly enjoys ice cream as well. Growing up (and still) my personal favorite is Dietsch Brothers Ice Cream in Findlay.… Continue reading

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Gas tax holiday being considered

By Matt Reese and Dale Minyo

Last week, President Joe Biden called on Congress to suspend the federal gas tax for three months, through September, without taking any money away from the Highway Trust Fund. He is also calling on states to take similar action to provide some direct relief, whether suspending their own gas taxes or helping consumers in other ways.

The federal government currently charges an 18-cent tax per gallon of gasoline and a 24-cent tax per gallon of diesel. Those taxes fund critical highways and public transportation, through the Highway Trust Fund. The President is also calling on Congress to make sure that a gas tax holiday has no negative effect on the Highway Trust Fund. 

In addition to federal gas tax relief, the President is calling on state and local governments to provide additional consumer relief. Already, some states and local governments have acted. Connecticut and New York governors temporarily suspended their gas taxes.… Continue reading

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Vilsack announces Bioproduct Pilot Program

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture is accepting applications for a new pilot program created under President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to support the development of biobased products that have lower carbon footprints and increase the use of renewable agricultural materials, creating new revenue streams for farmers. This $10 million investment is part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s effort to rebuild infrastructure and create good-paying jobs and economic opportunity in our rural communities. 

Secretary Vilsack visited Dan and Debbie Creamery, a family-owned operation in Ely, Iowa, and met to discuss what impact the Bioproduct Pilot Program and resulting innovations will have on operations like theirs, as well as the customers they serve. Dan and Debbie’s Creamery farm is about 500 acres with a 120-head dairy operation. 

“Dan and Debbie represent the many American farmers, families and communities USDA is called to serve,” Vilsack said. “This pilot program is a critical part of USDA’s commitment to enhancing the circular economy and providing additional revenue streams for farmers.… Continue reading

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Report highlights smarter land use planning to protect agriculture

Smart growth and investment in America’s downtowns and main streets must occur now to secure the land that grows our food, according to American Farmland Trust’s new report Farms Under Threat 2040: Choosing an Abundant Future and the accompanying web mapping tool. 

“It is urgent we safeguard the land that grows our food,” said Mitch Hunter, AFT research director and lead author of the report. “In recent years, the global food system has been severely disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, the war in Ukraine, and widespread drought — pushing millions more people into severe hunger. The mounting effects of climate change and the rising global population will make it ever harder to ensure a stable food supply in the coming decades.” 

AFT’s Farms Under Threat research has shown Americans are paving over agricultural land at a rapid pace. From 2001-16, our nation lost or compromised 2,000 acres of farmland and ranchland every day. … Continue reading

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Nutrient value of wheat straw

By Laura Lindsey, Lee Beers, CCA, and Ed Lentz, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

Before removing the straw from the field, it’s important farmers understand the nutrient value. This is especially important now with high N, P, and K fertilizer prices. The nutrient value of wheat straw is influenced by several factors including weather, variety, and cultural practices. Thus, the most accurate values require sending a sample of the straw to an analytical laboratory. However, “book values” can be used to estimate the nutrient values of wheat straw. In previous newsletters, we reported that typically a ton of wheat straw would provide approximately 11 pounds of N, 3 pounds of P2O5, and 20 pounds of K2O. According to June 2022 fertilizer prices and nutrient removal “book values”, one ton of wheat straw would remove N, P, K valuing approximately $30.31.

Table 1. What is the value of your straw?… Continue reading

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Some market answers are coming soon…

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

This past week many funds exited their long grain positions. Some in the market were concerned over a worldwide economic recession and the two-week weather forecast that suggests widespread good growing conditions. 

Basis and spreads

Record basis levels throughout the western Corn Belt suggest farmers are not selling cash corn. That’s why end users are increasing bids because they likely do not have all their July needs covered. The July corn futures spread between September and December also increased, indicating strong demand for the immediate shipment of corn. 

Both factors have likely forced commercial facilities to sell out of all remaining grain ownership, which means any grain still left in the U.S. is likely owned by farmers who have not priced corn stored in the bins. 

Farmer vs. end user

Farmers who still have unpriced grain are telling me they are not selling anything until they know more about weather conditions in mid-July.… Continue reading

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Dean’s Charity Steer Show returns for 2022

The Dean’s Charity Steer Show, an event that benefits Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) of Central Ohio, returns to the Ohio State Fair in 2022 after a two-year hiatus. Hosted by The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES), it will be held from 2–4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 2, in the Cooper Arena at the Ohio Expo Center and State Fair.

“This exciting event brings together our community to celebrate agriculture and children, both for our 4-H youth as well as children benefiting from the Ronald McDonald House,” said Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES. “Every dollar we raise means families can stay together only steps away from their hospitalized child during one of the most stressful times of their lives.”

Each year, more than 82,000 nights of rest are provided to families of seriously ill children by the Columbus Ronald McDonald House, the second largest Ronald McDonald House in the world.… Continue reading

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Weed control in double-crop beans

By Mark Loux, Ohio State University Extension herbicide specialist

It’s been a tough summer in parts of Ohio to do anything on a timely schedule and there are some weedy fields. The best advice we have for big weeds in full-season soybeans is to increase rates and the complexity of POST herbicide applications, while still adhering to cutoffs for the application of certain herbicides as much as possible. Dicamba products, XtendiMax, Engenia, and Tavium, cannot legally be applied to Xtend and XtendiFlex soybeans after June 30. This cutoff date pertains to use in double-crop soybeans also. 

If you are planning on planting Xtend or XtendiFlex soybeans in double-crop fields and using dicamba as a burndown, apply before Friday. There isn’t a cutoff date for most other POST soybean herbicides — it’s based on either crop stage (eg R1) or days before harvest. 

Double-crop soybeans usually need some type of weed control program, although how weedy they get depends upon weeds surviving down in the wheat that can take off once they receive light; how much rain we get in July, which drives additional weed emergence and rate of soybean growth; and how fast the soybeans grow and develop a canopy.… Continue reading

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