Featured News

Cereal Rye and Slugs

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

It’s a typical Ohio spring.  Sporadic rains, followed by a few days of sunshine, then more drizzle.  Farmers are trying to get crops planted, but progress varies.  Under these conditions, cereal rye is growing fast which can help dry out soils but tends to shade newly planted crops.  Second, with a warm winter and fairly warm spring with rain, slugs and voles (field mice) are flourishing. Weeds are also growing because it is too wet to spray all the fields.  Here are some tips to deal with these problems. 

Cover crops, especially cereal rye, outcompete many troublesome weeds but cover crop needs to be terminated.  Most farmers will kill cover crop with herbicides, but crimper crop rollers can terminate naturally and if the crop is tall, get it on the ground. Once it is on the ground, it will hold moisture and keep soil temperatures cooler going into summer. … Continue reading

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War on the Western Front: Ohio and the War of 1812

By Mike Ryan, OCJ field reporter

After achieving independence from England, the upstart American government was tasked with a variety of conflicts that threatened the newly established nation. As the Napoleonic Wars between Britain and France raged on the European continent and on the seas of the Atlantic, tensions with Americans were provoked by the English maritime practices of commandeering American ships, forcing U.S. sailors into servitude with the British Navy and firing upon, boarding, and sinking any U.S. commercial ship suspected of contact with the French. 

Further, the British continued to occupy forts and establishments in territory ceded to the U.S. after the Revolution. Though the Brits abandoned the 13 colonies after the Revolutionary War, they still maintained possession of other parts of the continent, and some British loyalists would come to settle in the Northwest Territories along the southern shores of Lake Erie. The English allied with hostile Native American tribes in the Great Lakes region, supporting and arming them, further contributing to conflict and instability in the area.… Continue reading

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The perfect crime — almost

By Don “Doc” Sanders

In 6 to 8 weeks one Northeastern U.S. dairy farm appeared to be set for the perfect crime — murder. But first let me lay a foundation of the spot for that perfect crime. This timeframe would be adequate as this is the amount of time needed to compost a cow or for that matter any large animal, but first let me fill you in with the background.

Dairy farms are microcosms of the world. Just like a village where babies are born nearly every day, people also die nearly every day, just as it occurs on a dairy farm. Cows die, calves are born, fortunately for most herds this isn’t every dairy in small herds but it often is multiple daily occurrences in big herds.

Years ago, there were entrepreneurs that operated businesses by picking up dead animals from livestock operations, transport them to a rendering plant where the hide and other remnants would be recovered for glue, gelatin, fertilizer, and if relatively fresh, even insulin.… Continue reading

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YAP 2024 grant recipients

Eight local Young Agricultural Professionals groups have been awarded $500 grants for educational programming or events they are planning or that have taken place already in 2024.  

The local grants are a part of Farm Credit Mid-America’s $100,000 donation to Farm Bureau young leader programs in its six-state region of Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and Tennessee. Farm Credit Mid-America proudly supports these local grant programs, as well as Ohio Farm Bureau’s annual statewide Young Ag Professionals contests and the YAP Winter Leadership Experience.

Ag Toy Drive

After its inception in 2017, the Ag Toy Drive has been a cornerstone event for the Ashland and Wayne County Young Ag Professionals and the Medina County Young Farmers. The event has grown from 40 people attending and around $5,000 in toy donations to well over 100 attending and over $12,500 in toy donations made in 2023. The YAP committee will once again solicit donations from businesses (both cash and toys) as well as from attendees at the event, then take part in major toy shopping where they look for agricultural-themed toys to give to Toys for Tots and other local charities.… Continue reading

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Planting progress moving ahead, but more dry weather needed

Josh Kiser

We were able to start planting on Tuesday and we had a pretty big breakdown on our corn planter, so it took us a couple days fixing that. We were able to start planting again yesterday and got quite a bit accomplished in a short time.

There’s a bunch of people out planting now. We had a pretty fast-moving storm go through Monday and some areas got quite a bit of rain. We just missed the heaviest portion of that storm by maybe a mile, so we’re lucky. There are a few people with some farms that still aren’t ready to plant yet because of that heavy rain, but most people around here started Monday or Tuesday. I would say, in this area, planting is around 25% done, but there have been years where we’re not started at this point. It depends on the year, but it’s pretty common to still be planting now in this area.… Continue reading

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Fashion and farming with soybeans

By Matt Reese and Dale Minyo

Columbus area elementary students are looking stylish this spring with some truly one-of-a-kind jewelry following the Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural and

Environmental Sciences “We Grow Scientists” event at Waterman Agricultural and Natural Resources Laboratory. “We Grow Scientists” was a free event help May 1 open to learners of all ages looking to learn more about STEM activities as part of the COSI Science Festival.  

The soybean seed necklaces students made at the event provide not only a unique look, but a great learning opportunity for young fashion-conscious students, said Lena Dickerson, a sophomore at Otterbein University and a GrowNextGen ambassador, who was working with students at the event.

“To make soybean necklaces, all you have to do is put two soybeans in a tiny little packet along with a cotton ball. Spray it with a little bit of water and as long as you wear that around your neck, the heat from your body actually helps it grow.… Continue reading

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Journey to Stone Lab: What H2Ohio research is learning for farmers to utilize

“There is no difference between a healthy environment and a healthy economy.” -Chris Winslow

In this one-of-a-kind Ohio Field Leader video, Dusty Sonnenberg heads to Stone Lab on Lake Erie to talk with Chris Winslow of The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and the Ohio Sea Grant, serving as director of OSU Stone Lab. They discuss the research being done for water quality on the lake, and what they’re finding about the impacts farmer contribution to the watershed. How does the Ohio Sea Grant interact with H2Ohio? What has been learned? How does the research come back to inform practices on the farm? Perspectives to all of those questions and more in this Ohio Field Leader video.

Learn more about H2Ohio online at h2.ohio.gov.Continue reading

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Weather driving global markets

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Weather. It was THE price driver for grains as the month of May began and a factor in several regions around the world. Flooding in southern Brazil, primarily in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, quickly became a major event in the first few days of May. Brazil’s soybean harvest was estimated to have reached 90% at that time. However, with Rio Grande do Sul (RGDS) experiencing major flooding as well as the loss of life, it became a big deal for soybeans literally overnight. It was estimated that soybeans not yet harvested in RGDS ranged from 4-8 million tons, or 147 million to 294 million bushels. The flooding resulted in 60-plus deaths in the first days of flooding. Rain totals ranged from 6 to 20 inches. Additional rains which took place in the following days pushed soybean prices to successive days of double digit gains of 28 cents and then 16 cents.… Continue reading

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Cattlemen youth awarded for a successful BEST season

The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association’s (OCA) Beef Exhibitor Show Total (BEST) program celebrated 25 years with the wrap up the 2023-2024 BEST season in May at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus. The awards banquet was attended by over 750 participants and their families. Over 350 BEST exhibitors were awarded for their show success, cattle industry knowledge, photography skills, community service efforts, and more.

This year’s BEST program featured eight weekends of sanctioned shows held throughout the state. Over 700 youth participants showed 1,000 head of market animals and heifers throughout the season.

This year’s sponsoring partners were Robbins Show Steers, Ag-Pro Companies, Bob Evans Farms, Diamond T Land and Cattle Co., Dickson Cattle Co., Giulitto Trucking LLC, M.H. EBY, Inc., Performance Training Solutions, The Folks Printing, Jones Show Cattle, R.D. Jones Excavating, Ricer Equipment, 6R Farms, Shepard Cattle Company and Weaver Livestock.

The year-end BEST banquet kicked off with the annual Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) donation.… Continue reading

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Drones find niche with seeding cover crops in Ohio

By John Fulton and Alex Thomas

Cover crops are crucial in sustainable agriculture by improving soil health, preventing erosion, and enhancing nutrient cycling. However, timing and logistics can be challenging when seeding cover crops. Traditionally, cover crops have been seeded using conventional drills once a crop is harvested, using high clearance machines retrofitted to apply cover crops or aerially. The challenge has been seeding cover crops in the early fall providing time for emergence and biomass growth before the first frost. Enter the drone — a versatile tool finding its niche in cover crop applications across Ohio. In fact, 2024 will serve as the third year for using drones here in Ohio as a popular option to spread cover crops.

Drones, also known as UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), have gained popularity across various industries, including agriculture. Their ability to fly autonomously, capture high-resolution imagery, apply crop protection products, and precisely distribute seeds makes them an ideal tool for cover crop seeding.… Continue reading

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Buckeye Temp Tracker – May 21, 2024

The Buckeye Temp Tracker is powered by BA Genetics and takes note of soil temperatures in four counties each week.

In the interactive map below, click on the thermometer icons to see the soil temperature results from each of the four Ohio counties involved in the program.

Each reading is in degrees Fahrenheit.


This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 300px-Map_of_Ohio_highlighting_Ashland_County.svg_.png

Ashland County

Corn Stalks – 66 degrees

Worked Ground – 66 degrees


Fairfield County

Corn Stalks (worked and planted) – 66 degrees

Worked Ground (planted) – 66 degrees


Fayette County

Corn Stalks – 69 degrees

Worked Ground – 68 degrees


Mercer County

Corn Stalks – 73 degrees

Worked Ground – 71 degrees

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Cab Cam: Planting into 6-foot (and taller) cover crops

In this Cab Cam, Dusty Sonnenberg of Ohio’s Country Journal and Ohio Ag Net heads to Henry County for a unique site as Kent Sonnenberg plants into six-foot and taller cover crops. The soil health-focused venture utilizes a roller crimper to get the job done in a year that’s been particularly good for spring grass growth. Tune in for the reasons why and what advantages they find in their system.

The 2024 Cab Cam series is brought to you by Precision Agri Services Inc. More information at www.precisionagriservices.com.Continue reading

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Storage added over 70 cents to bottom line this year

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

It looks like most corn throughout the U.S. will get planted by the end of May, or the first week of June. So, a repeat of 2019 seems unlikely. The northern Corn Belt was a concern, but producers there are now telling me they should be done within a few days or by next weekend.

There are pockets between I-70 and I-80 from Nebraska to Ohio that are delayed but should get planted within the next 2-3 weeks. The biggest delays are happening in Northeast Indiana and Northwest Ohio, where farmers have still been unable to start planting.

While this later planting pace increases the chance of below trendline yields, it is not a guarantee. In other years, planting pace has been this slow, but good summer weather still led to trendline yields. Basically, the weather in July will still determine what the final corn yield will ultimately be.… Continue reading

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Sunrise names 2024 RISE FFA Career Program recipients

Sunrise Cooperative, Inc. is pleased to announce its 2024 RISE FFA Career Program recipients. Slated to join Sunrise as full-time employees following graduation are Riley Collins from Hillsboro FFA, Seth Crytzer and Braydon Rakovec from Hillsdale FFA, Cara Deam of West-Liberty Salem FFA, Skylar England of Bellevue FFA, Alex Lamma from Sidney FFA, Seth Lenke from Oak Harbor FFA, Bodie Rogers of Tecumseh FFA, Ethan Scaggs from Lincolnview FFA, Madison Shell of Clyde FFA, Boston Smith from South Central FFA and Ben Sonnanstine from Miami Valley Career Technology Center FFA. 

Following graduation, these individuals will officially join the team at Sunrise and will work their way through our RISE FFA Career Program, otherwise referred to as Sunrise University. Over the next four years, our new hires will gain hands-on, real-life job experiences, while learning all facets of the cooperative.

In addition to full-time employment, Alex Lamma was selected as the top recipient and will receive a 2023 Jeep Gladiator, that the 2023-2024 Ohio FFA President Luke Jennings drove during his tenure, as a signing bonus.… Continue reading

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Spring Planting Safety Tips

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

Farmers are starting the busy planting season as the soil both warms up and dries out.  Spring is a hectic time as farmers try to plant their crops quickly to optimize crop yields.  However, planting season can be dangerous, for both farmers, their spouse, and children, hired hands, and non-farm people.  Agriculture is a dangerous profession, averaging 100 injuries per day and around 410 deaths per year (2019) or 19.4 deaths per 100,000 workers.  Let’s try to make this a safe year.

Let’s start with the children.  Farm children, grand kids, and even city kids love to be on the farm, and they are fascinated by tractors, wagons, sprayers, fertilizer equipment, you name it.  Children do not realize the danger this equipment can pose.  Take some time and educate them if they visit.  Children need adult supervision and need to stay a distance away. … Continue reading

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Another wet week brings crop progress closer to average

Despite rain last week, Ohio farmers were still able to makesome planting progress, according to Ben Torrance, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 1 percent short, 49 percent adequate, and 50 percent surplus. Statewide, the average temperature for the week ending on May 19 was 65.9 degrees, 4.9 degrees above normal. Weather stations recorded an average of 0.96 inches of precipitation, 0.03 inches above average. There were 2.5 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending May 19.

Farmers reported fieldwork and planting was slow with the intermittent rain showers last week. Some haylage was made. Corn and soybean planting progressed to 46 and 41 percent planted, respectively. Planting progress for both crops was behind last year, but ahead of the 5-year average. Oats were 86 percent planted. Winter wheat was 70 percent headed and winter wheat condition was 73 percent good to excellent. Oats condition was 74 percent good to excellent.… Continue reading

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Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 349 | This Podcast Can’t Be Beet

In this week’s Ohio Ag Net podcast, join hosts Matt Reese and Dusty Sonnenberg as they welcome Elizabeth Long and Larry Davis from Ag Resource Management. Dive into a thorough discussion on the current state of crop profitability, the impacts of interest rates, and the ins and outs of crop insurance among other vital topics.

This episode also features valuable insights from Tadd Nicholson of Ohio Corn & Wheat, who provides an update on Carbon Intensity Scoring. Additionally, hear from Curtis Gram of Freedom Fish Farms, sharing the latest developments in his sector.

NameStart
Intro and opening discussion0:00.000
Tadd Nicholson of Ohio Corn and Wheat4:32.697
Curtis Gram of Freedom Fish Farms15:29.729
Elizabeth Long and Larry Davis of ARM22:26.882
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