I scouted corn fields near Hoopeston this week that were planted the end of April. The corn was in the late dough stage, not too far from denting. More corn leaf aphids are showing up, but they shouldn’t be a problem in corn with adequate moisture after pollination.
I have received a few calls about whether corn is firing from lack of nitrogen or is it just going through its normal maturity stages. Some questions I ask are: when was the nitrogen applied, how much rain have you received, what soil type and what stage is the corn in? TheseRead more
Weekly Scouting Report - August 4, 2014
I scouted corn fields in the Streator area this week. Disease pressure has increased slightly in the past two weeks. I could see differences by hybrid at this point. Gray Leaf Spot and Common Rust are the two main diseases that I’ve found, with Northern Leaf Blight spotted occasionally. Corn leaf aphids were the most prevalent pest I found. I did see a few rootworm beetles and Japanese beetles. Below are some pictures I took of corn leaf aphids and an explanation of what this pest can do to corn.
The corn leaf aphid is a blue-green or gray,Read more
I scouted corn in Iroquois and Kankakee County this week and I didn’t see anything that caused concern. Insect numbers and disease pressures are low. Most applications of fungicide have been sprayed. Some fields are showing signs of nitrogen loss.
This week I decided to exhibit the R2 – R5 growth stages. I think this is important because I’ve been asked numerous times about what could go wrong this late in the season. The vulnerability of this crop lowers as it moves through these four stages:
I scouted soybeans this week and found bean leaf beetles. They are a quick little insect and very hard to find. As soon as they sense your presence, they fall to the ground. I entered the fields and immediately noticed leaf feeding. The feeding reminds me of what a shot gun blast would look like, having numerous small holes. I found many of them in the upper most node, feeding on the new growth. They like cooler weather and this cooler weather has them out more during the day. Late morning or early evening are normally the best time to find them.Read more
by: John Woerner
Fungicides prevent infections better than they cure infection. If spores land on a plant that has already been treated, they will be killed as they start to infect. If a plant is treated after infections are about more than 3 days old, these infections will continue to develop into lesions. Effective disease control requires that the plant be treated just as the disease is becoming established.
I base my treatment threshold on proximity to the ear leaf. From the ear leaf up is the area of theRead more
I scouted in the Hoopeston and Streator areas last week. I found light Gray Leaf Spot and a trace amount of Rust. I did not see anything that concerned me at this time. I saw very little insect action. The Streator area had a lot of goose-necked corn from saturated soils and wind, apart from that, crops look very good. Heavy rains hit many areas this weekend and I’ve seen plants affected by the lack of oxygen in the soil. With dry weather, crops should improve quickly. I have seen some nutrient deficiencies showing up in wet areas. The pictures belowRead more
The diseases shown on this page are what I consider the main three major leaf diseases. I have been scouting in the Taylorville, Modesta, Atlanta, and Streator areas and have not seen anything that concerns me at this time, however, circumstances can change quickly. Please keep an eye on your crops.
Gray Leaf Spot
This is what I saw most of last week. I also started to see the long term effects of water saturation in corn fields. The results are yellowing corn and stunted plants.
The excessive water in most areas has caused much of the nitrogen to be leached out of the soil.
Nitrogen and fungicide management will be important tools this growing season.
Saturday night’s storm that hit Iroquois County left a path of destruction unlike any I have ever seen.
If you were anywhere near a storm in the last week, you should check your corn fields for green snap or hail damage. Corn is growing very fast and is extremely brittle.
I saw the first signs of leaf disease this week, including holcus leaf spot and rust. I did not see anything that worried me, but it should be something to keep an eye on in the coming weeks when decisions are being made about applying fungicide.
I was down in the Taylorville, Illinois, area this week and I saw a lot of leaf feeding from nymph size grasshoppers.
I also saw areas of what I believe are corn borer feeding on refuge plants. I could not find any of the culprits. The corn crop is progressing very well and as of today most of the areas that I scoutRead more
Weed pressure is gaining momentum. Growing conditions are perfect with the rain and warm weather. While these conditions allow the corn and soybeans to grow, so do the weeds.
I would suggest making a loop through your fields a week or so after spraying. This is a waterhemp weed that was sprayed a week ago with glyphosate and shows no signs of being affected. Also, in past years, I’ve seen extremely heavy weed pressured areas produce escapes because the larger plants provide a protective canopy for the smaller plants beneath them. Don’t be surprised in theRead more
My first week of scouting was in the Crescent City, Hoopeston, Ashkum and St. Anne areas. I looked at corn that had been planted around the 3rd week of April. I started on Tuesday morning and found plants that were damaged and yellowed. By Wednesday evening, good color had returned and everything was improving quickly.
Many people were questioning whether to replant or how much to replant. However, plant populations were very good. Target populations were being reached, except in areas where there had been excess standing water.
I saw something this weekRead more
Pythium; Damping-off is the first seedling disease to occur in a growing season because this fungus prefers cold soil temperatures. Dead seedlings may be visible on the ground with infected plants killed before the first true leaf stage. Plants often have a rotted appearance. Leaves of infected seedlings are initially gray-green and then turn brown. A few days later, the plants die. Diseased plants are easily pulled from the soil because of rotted roots.
Phytopthora; The symptoms of Phytophthora damping-off are very similar to those of PythiumRead more
Seed Spacing, Depth, and Planter Speed
|John Woener, Consulting Agronomist|
Location, location, location may be the number one priority when purchasing real estate, but location, location, location could also be a farmers number one priority when the planter rolls. Seed location or depth is at the top of the list in planter performance.
With high population it is imperative to maintain and adjust machinery so seed spacing is even and depth control is consistent. Planter performance is the most fundamental factor in determining what awaits the combine. You have oneRead more
Cover Crops: Investing in your Soil
I was recently asked to speak at the National Conference on Cover Crops & Soil Health in Omaha, Nebraska, on the importance of cover crops and how you can utilize government funding to make smart choices in soil management. Here at ProHarvest, we encourage farmers to use the same approach on cover crops that are used when buying seed for corn, soybean, or other high-value crops. We want to be the dealer that helps you make choices about cover crops and here’s why:
The National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) provides financial and technicalRead more
As we are in full harvest mode in the Midwest, I am amazed at the yields that are coming out of these fields with so little rain late in the season. I truly believe the reason for the better than expected yields this year is outstanding genetics. Each year our genetic advancement improves quantitatively. Better traits and treatments are extremely important but the factor that trumps everything is genetics.
This thought was verified when I was talking to my good friend, Dave Mowers, consulting agronomist for AIM for the Heartland, Inc. I asked him what areRead more
Harvest is slowly getting started! Early results of ProHarvest products have been great, with reports of 3066CR2Y soybeans "the best beans I have ever raised", as well as strong reports on 8023StaxRIB corn. Early test plots are confirming the performance of 8330 and 8388 as well.
It appears that harvest speed will increase quickly next week. At ProHarvest, we do ask that you take some time and make sure this is a safe harvest for all!Read more
At ProHarvest, we are extremely excited about our new releases for 2014. We have just completed 3 major field nights in Illinois, showcasing our plots in Ashkum, Hoopeston and Streator. These plots have different growing conditions and soil types. This on-farm research, along with many other research locations, verifies the products that are in our line-up. With data from our own fields, we are making decisions based on hands-on observations. With the release of many new products, we are providing you with a complete package of seed. Our research is verified and statistically assessed to giveRead more
This week our Seed Specialist, Jay Whalen from Streator, Illinois, sent me a picture from his area. He has been spending a lot of time in his customers’ fields and has noticed a trend. The Genuity StaxRIB hybrids have been showing the least amount of ear feeding and in some fields the difference is significant. Leitz Consulting is evaluating the situation and is helping Jay decide if the fields that are not planted with StaxRIB should be aerial spayed with insecticide. As this picture circulated between our different sales territories, it is becoming obvious that most Seed Specialists areRead more
At ProHarvest Seeds, we take great pride in selecting many different genetic and trait platforms for your farms. Our promise to our customers is to utilize the best combination of genetics, traits and treatments for your successful harvest. We work diligently to research and test all the seed that we provide to you. This year our customers are telling us that they want more options for refuge in a bag, therefore; in 2014, ProHarvest Seeds will be offering 12 elite hybrids with the 5% refuge in the bag. All StaxRIB hybrids will be treated with Votivo 500. This will give you more convenience atRead more
Each year we face different challenges during the planting season. I have experienced many different times when farmers just want to change their plans because of some unexpected situation. My advice is to follow your plan. You have spent months developing your plan for each field.
For example, if you have prepared your plan to use fungicide on corn and soybeans, you should not move away from that plan even though you may have planted later than expected. If you have planned an application, don’t cancel using the products, just adjust the timing of the application. OverRead more
This is shaping up to be one of those planting seasons that we will be talking about for years to come! Hopefully, weather patterns will cooperate throughout the rest of the season and we will be fine. I recall talking to an old-timer last year about this time and the dry weather that was approaching and the planting challenges we were facing. He comment was this – "I remember a year when I started farming that was similar to this in early summer. I don’t remember how it turned out, but I’m still here!"
In the midst of the busy planting and replanting, we have also been working on ways that weRead more
A summer annual in your rotation is a great way to provide relief for your permanent pastures. Sorghum Sudan grass, hybrid Sudan grass, or a hybrid pearl millet are all great products. If you manage your grazing times, you can get much more return per acre with an annual in the rotation. With a little moisture and heat, a summer annual can easily make up for your summer slump.
Average seed cost per acre will between $40-$80 with a yield ranging from 3 to 8 tons of dry matter, depending on proper management and fertility.
“Turn-out” time on these grasses will be at a height of 18
“Wow” it is wet. It is amazing how this has been going on all spring for many farmers, but it is still the number one conversation topic. I am providing a link that Ryan Bell (our Seed Specialist in Covington Indiana) forwarded around earlier this month. The article was written the beginning of May, but it is still very relevant at this time. Be sure to read this article before you switch maturities and risk giving up yield. Every circumstance has its own little twist, but in general it can cost you more yield/profit switching later in the season than it does during normal planting dates.Read more
Our challenges have started early this year. Planting has been delayed by at least a month in most locations and longer in other places. Time to breathe easy? Not likely for farmers because now that corn planting is wrapping up in some places and just getting going in others, we are now faced with a new challenge, the possibility of having some Black Cutworms or Armyworms working on our already late planted corn.
So why are we so concerned this year about these insects and why may we have issues with them? The answer is simple; this year we had a very cool and wet start to spring delaying mostRead more