April 19, 2019

Good evening,

This past week we had the Wheat/Barley Evaluation Stand field event near Wapakoneta.  During this event, we learned how to evaluate wheat stands to determine if the crop was worth keeping.  I have attached an article about the two wheat stand evaluation techniques we used out in the field, the Wheat Stem Count Method and the Fractional Green Canopy Cover Method.  Did you miss the Farm Bill Summit last week?  You can watch it in its entirety at the link: https://www.ocj.com/2019/04/live-farm-bill-summit-from-versailles-april-11-2019/.

Evaluating Wheat Stands News Release

With the change in the weather, planting season is just around the corner.  Because of the need to move farm machinery around from field to field, I have submitted an article to the media this week about farm machinery roadway safety.  Are you familiar with all the roadway laws for farm machinery?  Check out the article and the Roadway Law Bulletin to make sure you know the law and are being safe while out on the roads this spring.

Farm Machinery Road Safety News Release

Roadway Law Bulletin

Believe it or not, there have already been three Crop Weather Reports this spring so I have attached them for your review.  The latest report for week ending April 14 has soils at adequate to surplus moisture with 20% of oats planted and 41% of winter wheat in fair condition.  There is an OSU Extension Master Gardener Volunteers meeting Monday, April 22 starting at 7:00 pm at Harco Industries.  See the articles below for information about ag crops.

April 1 Crop Weather Report

April 8 Crop Weather Report

April 15 Crop Weather Report


Have a Happy Easter,









Spring Roller Coaster to Continue – Jim Noel

As discussed last week, we are in a more active weather pattern now that will last the rest of April. We expect a storm system every 3-4 days.  Overall, rainfall events will be classified as moderate in nature. But with the high frequency we expect rain for the rest of April to be slightly above normal. As shown on the attached 2-week rainfall graphic, expect 1.5-3 inches of rain for the most part for the rest of April. Isolated totals to 4 inches can’t be rules out. Normal rainfall is 1.5-2.0 inches. To read more about the approaching weather, go to https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-09/spring-roller-coaster-continue.









OARDC Branch Station Near-Surface Air and Soil Temperatures – Aaron Wilson, Greg LaBarge

We are once again providing soil temperatures in the C.O.R.N. Newsletter for spring 2019. The Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) Agricultural Research Stations located throughout the state have two and four inch soil temperatures monitored on an hourly basis. Average daily air temperature (average of maximum and minimum daily temperatures; red-dashed), two and four inch soil temperatures for spring 2019 (brown and blue-solid, respectively), and two and four inch five-year average soil temperatures (brown and blue-dotted, respectively) for four OARDC stations from around Ohio (Northwest, Wooster, Western, and Piketon; see map insets). Conditions for 2019 are plotted through April 14th.  Read more at https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-09/oardc-branch-station-near-surface-air-and-soil-temperatures.








Modified Relay Intercropping: Now is the Time to Make Sure your Plan will Work – Jason Hartschuh

Spring planting is just around the corner and so is modified relay intercropping planting of soybeans into growing wheat. This is a very versatile system working across multiple row spacing’s and planting dates. Eighteen years of MRI soybean planting have been done in Bucyrus with wheat yields averaging 75 bushels per acre and soybean yields of 33 bushels per acre. Over the past 3 years we have had outstanding double crop soybeans, but MRI has out yielded them by about 10 bushels per acre averaging 42 bushels per acre. One challenge though is that straw cannot be baled in the MRI system but can be in double cropping. The lower price of soybeans and higher price of straw is driving more producers to double crop soybeans. Go to https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-08/modified-relay-intercropping-now-time-make-sure-your-plan-will to learn more about modified relay intercropping.








2018 County Yield Estimates Available – Bruce Clevenger

The 2018 Ohio county estimates for crop yields were recently published by the USDA-National Agricultural Statistics Service.  This annual report provides a look back to the previous production year and give an average of planted and harvested acres as well as the county yield in bushels per acre and a total estimated production for the county.  The report additionally groups counties into nine reporting districts and provides an overall state yield estimate for corn and soybean. Ohio county estimates for the 2018 wheat crop were released back in December of 2018.  Finish reading about the 2018 county yield estimates at https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-08/2018-county-yield-estimates-available.









What are your Bedding Options; Is Keeping a Thin Wheat Stand Worth It? – Jason Hartschuh

Wheat fields are finally turning green, as we do stand evaluations (https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-07/estimating-wheat-yield-stem-counts) many producers are weighing poor stands versus their need for livestock bedding. As you weigh your options be sure to consider alternative agronomic crop fodder or cover crops as a bedding source. The two most common beddings wheat straw and sawdust are both already in short supply across the state. The first harvestable option is to look at cover crops you or a neighbor have planted. One option that has gained some popularity is precut rye straw. If your wheat stand is present but not thick enough to take to head you could follow these same principles making precut wheat straw then planting soybeans a month earlier for improved yields over double crop soybeans. Continue reading about bedding options at https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-09/what-are-your-bedding-options-keeping-thin-wheat-stand-worth-it.




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


April 8, 2019

Good afternoon,

Ag Council met this past Friday and we discussed the Lake Erie Bill of Rights.  With the recent passage of the Lake Erie Bill of Rights (LEBOR), Lake Erie has now been granted the same legal rights normally reserved for a person.  That means that any Toledoan who believes a business in the watershed is doing something they deem as detrimental to the lake could sue on the lake’s behalf.  Ohio’s agricultural community is working together to represent the interests of the farmer and has issued the attached letter.  Make sure you take a look at this letter, as the outcome of the current lawsuit filed by a Wood County farmer could have an impact on the direction this takes in the future.  OSU Extension has put together a Law Bulletin describing affirmative defenses that farmers may have if they are named in a possible lawsuit regarding water quality or other issues.  I have attached a copy of this bulletin to this email.

LEBOR Commodity Letter

Affirmative Defenses For Ag Production Law Bulletin

The recent warm weather has the discussion turning to the upcoming growing season.  Although it has been too wet for area farmers to begin spring work in most fields, several are taking a close look at their wheat fields and trying to decide if the crop is worth keeping or not.  If you are one of these people, there was an article in the CORN Newsletter addressing this issue that I have included below.  Also, there will be a Wheat/Barley Stand Evaluation field event tomorrow morning near Wapakoneta, starting at 10:30 am with the purpose of teaching you how to evaluate wheat or barley stands and talk about the economics of keeping the crop.  See the attached flyer for more information about this event.  Have you seen the county crop yield estimates recently released by USDA for this past year?  Hardin County averaged 190.0 bushels per acre corn, 61.9 bushels per acre soybean, and 71.1 bushels per acre wheat.  I have attached a copy of a news release I wrote about this topic.

Wheat/Barley Stand Evaluation Flyer

Crop Yields News Release

Since the winter meeting season is now officially compete, I have looking for cooperating farmers who might be interested in doing on-farm research in the county.  This past year, three local studies were included in the eFields publication that can be found at https://digitalag.osu.edu/efields.  This year, we are especially interested in conducting on-farm research with corn nitrogen rate trials, corn seeding rate trials, soybean seeding rate trials, soybean planting date + fungicide and insecticide trials, soybean fungicide trials, and stink bug insecticide trials.  If you are interested in other types of trials, we can also set these up to answer your “what if” questions, but they might not appear in the eFields publication for 2019.

Other upcoming events include the Farm Bill Summit on Thursday, April 11 from 6:30-9:30 pm in Darke County (see flyer), Dairy Service Unit Cheese Sale pick-up Friday, April 12 from 12:00-7:00 pm and April 13 from 9:00 am-12:00 pm at Wagner Dairy Farm.  I am now looking for rainfall reporters for both Goshen and Pleasant Townships, so let me know if you would like to help out monitoring rainfall this growing season in those townships.  As usual, I have included some articles below that you may be interested in reading while you wait for the fields to get fit.

2019 Farm Bill Summit Flyer












Estimating Wheat Yield With Stem Counts – Laura Lindsey

Between planting in the fall and Feekes 4 growth stage (beginning of erect growth) in the spring, winter wheat is vulnerable to environmental stress such as freezing temperatures with limited snow cover, saturated soils, and freeze-thaw cycles that cause soil heaving. All of which may lead to substantial stand reduction. However, a stand that looks thin in the spring does not always correspond to lower grain yield. Rather than relying on a visual stand assessment, farmers should estimate the yield potential of their winter wheat crop by counting stems, before deciding whether a field should be destroyed. To continue reading this article, go to https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-07/estimating-wheat-yield-stem-counts.








New Requirements to Apply Dicamba! – Jennifer Andon

As of October of 2018, the EPA announced that the registration for dicamba will be extended for two years for over-the top use of dicamba resistant corn and soybeans.  Additionally, new regulations now require that to mix, load or apply dicamba, you must be a licensed pesticide applicator.  The trained serviceperson is no longer qualified under the new regulations.  To receive a pesticide license to mix, load or apply dicamba, one must pass both the Core and Category 1 (Grain and Cereal Crops) exams offered by the Ohio Department of Agriculture.  The Ohio State University Pesticide Safety Education Program has prepared training videos to assist growers in preparing for the Core exam.  These trainings are supplemental to the study manuals and will not include the annual dicamba training, which is also mandatory.  For more information regarding the New Pesticide Applicator Training courses and videos, and online dicamba training, please go to: https://pested.osu.edu/PrivNewApp.









Keep an Eye Out for Water Quality Risk This Spring – Greg LaBarge

Research measuring nutrient losses from surface and subsurface drainage in Ohio indicates that not all fields contribute equally to various water quality issues. Fields with higher than average potential losses have some characteristics observed during everyday field activities or when working with agronomic records.  For example, a stream bank collapsing and sloughing off is adding to downstream sedimentation issues, or a field with a soil test report showing phosphorus levels above agronomic need can result in higher soluble phosphorous losses. Having landowners and operators recognize these higher risk scenarios and react to them by contacting conservation professionals can help speed water quality improvements. Go to https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-07/keep-eye-out-water-quality-risk-spring to finish reading this article.








Assessing Winter Damage and Evaluating Alfalfa Stand Health – Rory Lewandowski, Mark Sulc

The winter of 2019 has seen a lot of variability including large temperature swings, snow cover, no snow cover, rain, sleet and ice.  One constant for most areas of the state is that soils have remained wet and/or saturated throughout the fall and winter period.  Add all of this together and there is the potential for some significant winter injury.  Forage growers should plan to spend time assessing winter damage and evaluating the health of their forage stands, particularly alfalfa stands.  Assessment and stand health evaluation can begin once plants start to green up and produce 2 to 4 inches of growth. One of the primary concerns is the possibility of heaving damage.  Tap rooted crops such as alfalfa and red clover are particularly susceptible to heaving damage. To read more, go to https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-07/assessing-winter-damage-and-evaluating-alfalfa-stand-health.











Tri-State Farm Bill Summit – Sam Custer

The 2018 Farm Bill, passed by Congress and signed by President Trump, now awaits implementation by United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), agencies like the Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Services, Risk Management Agency and many others. The passage of the farm bill authorizes funding for many of the federal programs producers utilize throughout the growing season. This bill is considered to be mostly evolutionary not revolutionary, but there are still changes that will be important to producers and agribusinesses. The Ohio State University, the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture, the University of Kentucky and Farm Credit Mid-America are jointly sponsoring a Farm Bill Summit on Thursday, April 11, 2019 at the Versailles High School in Versailles, Ohio. Read more at https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-07/tri-state-farm-bill-summit.




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