May 11, 2017

Good evening,

Just as it seemed the rainfall was going to end, we got more last night.  Our Extension township rainfall reporters have recorded the rainfall for April 15-30, with an average of 3.16 inches of rain in Hardin County.  Last year, the average rainfall for the same time period was 1.46 inches. Rainfall for the April 15-30 time period is 1.12 inches more than the ten year average rainfall during the same dates.  This is the 25th year of this rainfall research being conducted in our county.  If you are interested in reading the monthly summary and its effect on crops, see the attached news article.   It appears that this weekend will be a nice weekend weather-wise, so this will be a great chance for you to go to the OSU Extension Master Gardener Volunteers annual plant sale in the Arts & Crafts building at the fairgrounds.  This year’s plant sale starts at 10:00 and ends at 12:00 noon this Saturday, May 13.  See the attached flyer for more details if you are interested in purchasing some plants from local gardeners to beautify your home and landscape.

April 15-30 Rainfall Summary

MGV Plant Sale 2017 Flyer

If you are like me, you are trying to keep your lawn mowed in between the rains.  There are some guidelines that should be followed when mowing your lawn to keep it healthy as pointed out by Master Gardener Volunteer Barb Snyder in attached article about Turf Tips – Mowing.  This past Friday I checked the first set of armyworm and black cutworm traps and found 3 armyworm moths and 3 black cutworm moths so they have begun their flight in the area and will soon be laying eggs in grassy areas.  Since the black cutworm is the earliest of these two pests, this week I have attached a fact sheet from Penn State University that you can read to learn more about the damage this pest causes to wheat and corn, as well as how to scout for it in the event that it becomes a problem in local fields.

Turf Tips – Mowing News Release

Black Cutworm Fact Sheet

Do you raise strawberries and are looking for a way to extend the growing season?  A practice that can accomplish this involves using plasticulture.  There will be a Strawberry Field Night at the OSU South Centers in Piketon if you are willing to travel to southern Ohio to learn about it on May 25.  I have attached a copy of the flyer for this event in case there any growers in the area who would be interested in attending.  Another event happening soon is the Soil and Water Conservation District meeting Thursday, May 18 starting at 7:30 am.  Until then, hopefully we will get some warm, dry, and windy days so that the fields can become fit again for planting.   I have included some agronomy articles below for your reading that include some timely information about this subject and others.

Strawberry Plasticulture Field Night Flyer


Frost Damage in Wheat  – Laura Lindsey, Douglas Alt, Pierce Paul

Air temperatures dropped to an average of about 25-32 degrees on at least two nights over the last few days. Understandably, some wheat producers are concerned that these temperatures may have caused some damage to their crop. We will have to see what happens over the next few days. Based on information coming out of a Kansas State University publication, at our current growth stage, between Feekes 9 and 10, in northern counties and between heading and flowering in southern Ohio, the yield effect of frost can range from moderate to very severe if temperatures drop to 24 – 28° F for two or more hours. Go to to read more.

Corn Management Practices for Later Planting Dates – Changes to Consider – Peter Thomison, Steve Culman

There was little progress made on corn planting last week due to persistent rains and saturated field conditions (  As of Sunday May 7, 46 percent of Ohio’s corn crop was planted – only 4% more than the previous week. Moreover, according to NASS estimates, only 12% of the crop has emerged.  Weather forecasts indicate the possibility of more rain this week possibly continuing through the weekend. As prospects for a timely start to spring planting diminish, growers need to reassess their planting strategies and consider adjustments. Since delayed planting reduces the yield potential of corn, the foremost attention should be given to management practices that will expedite crop establishment.  To find out more, go to

Adapting soybean burndown programs for large marestail – Mark Loux

As a result of the warm winter and early spring, weed growth in no-till fields is ahead of schedule.  Fields not treated with burndown herbicides last fall or during the earlier drier period this spring can have some large weeds at this point.  Many fields need time to dry out following the most recent rains before they will tolerate traffic, which will allow weeds to get even larger and more challenging to kill.  Large marestail can be especially problematic due to the combination of glyphosate and ALS resistance in most populations.  Cool weather can reduce the activity of the herbicides that have activity on marestail.  The standard “glyphosate + 2,4-D” burndown is not likely to control large marestail plants based on recent history, and increasing the 2,4-D rate or adding metribuzin won’t necessarily result in effective control of these plants either. Find out more about how to adjust soybean burndown programs at

Wet Weather and Evaluating Soybean Stand – Laura Lindsey, Alexander Lindsey

Saturated soils after soybean planting can cause uneven emergence and stand reductions of varying extent depending on the stage of the soybean plant and other environmental factors including temperature and duration of saturated conditions. Additionally, increased disease incidence may further reduce plant stand. While soil moisture is necessary for germination, soybean seeds will not germinate when soils are saturated because oxygen is limiting. Saturated soils during soybean germination may cause uneven emergence. Go to to finish reading this article.

First Cutting of Forages is Fast Approaching – Mark Sulc

The warm temperatures this spring have stimulated growth of hay crops in Ohio and they are well ahead of normal development for early May. The only exception is where spring freezes significantly damaged the crop a few weeks ago. But for most stands, timing for first harvest of high quality forage is coming earlier than normal. Below are the optimal neutral detergent fiber (NDF) targets for high quality forages: Forage NDF for high producing and early lactation dairy cows is legumes: <44 (<42% is ideal), grasses: < 53% (50% is ideal), mostly legume mix: 42 to 45%, 50/50 Mix: 44 to 48%, and mostly grass mix: 46 to 49. Pure grass stands should be harvested in the late boot stage just before the heads start to peek out. If any heads can be seen, the NDF is probably 55%, past the optimal for dairy cows. Go to to finish reading this article.

Mark A. Badertscher

Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator

OSU Extension Hardin County

1021 W. Lima Street, Suite 103, Kenton, OH 43326

419-674-2297 Office

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