Soybean Cyst Nematode Testing Available

Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) was first identified in Ohio in 1981, and has now been found in 72 of Ohio’s 88 counties, including Allen. SCN is a small roundworm parasite that damages soybeans by feeding on roots, robbing the plants of nutrients, and providing wound sites for root rotting fungi to enter. The severity of symptoms and yield losses are dependent on several factors including: the number of nematodes present in the field at planting, the soybean variety, tillage practices, soil texture, fertility, pH, and environmental conditions during the growing season. Seed producers worked to breed varieties with resistance to SCN initially, but now certain populations are becoming resistant to the resistance.

The SCN Coalition was developed with funding from the soybean checkoff to raise awareness among farmers. The goal of this group is to decrease SCN populations and increase yield potential for soybean farmers. As part of this effort OSU Extension in Allen County is looking for producers who will allow their fields to be sampled by extension personnel. There is no cost to the farmer for this program and all data will be kept confidential. If you are interested in having your fields sampled please call 419-879-9108 or e-mail Clint Schroeder at

What’s going on with Lumber Prices?

By Brent Sohngen, Professor Environmental and Natural Resource Economics, The Ohio State University

In case you haven’t noticed, lumber prices have increased a lot over the last year.  Based on the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Lumber Price Index, which you can find here, lumber prices have increased 180% since April, 2020.  This increase started last fall, and has continued ever since. So, why have they risen, and how high will they go?

Let’s start with the first question, why have they risen?  The economic explanation is relatively straightforward: Demand rose rapidly due to pandemic related building, and supply is really inelastic, as we say in economics.  Thus, while the demand of wood has increased dramatically, the supply of wood hasn’t been able to keep up.  Let’s break this down. Continue reading