Ohio House Passes Senate Bill 57 to Decriminalize Hemp and License Hemp Cultivation

Now that the Ohio House passed Senate Bill 57 to decriminalize hemp and license cultivation, what’s next for Ohio?


1. Governor Mike DeWine must sign the bill

2. The Ohio Department of Agriculture must create rules and a regulatory program

3.Ohio’s Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (a legislative committee) must approve ODA’s rules and program

4.USDA must approve the state program

5. The Ohio Department of Agriculture must start accepting license applications

6. Producers must apply for licenses

7. The Ohio Department of Agriculture must approve applications from producers

7. Producers must find seed (and buyers of the final product)

By: Evin Bachelor, Law Fellow, The Ohio State University Agricultural and Resource Law Program.

To learn about the basics of hemp production, check out this facsheet from the University of Kentucky An Introduction to Industrial Hemp and Hemp Agronomy




Delayed Corn Planting the Disease Risk in Corn

Disease Risk. In Ohio, several foliar diseases are of greater concern in late-planted corn for a number of reasons, including: 1 – for diseases like gray leaf spot (GLS), northern corn leaf blight (NCLB), and eye spot that are caused by pathogens that overwinter in corn stubble, delayed planting allows more time for inoculum (spores) to buildup, especially in no-till, corn-on-corn fields and 2 – for diseases like common and southern rust that are caused by pathogens that do not overwinter in Ohio, planting late allows more time for spore for blow up from southern states. So, with late planting, not only are more spores likely to be available to infect the crop, they are also more likely to infect the crop at an earlier growth stage and under conditions that are more favorable for disease development. Let us use gray leaf spot as an example. In a “normal” year, although lesions may develop early in the season, this disease typically takes off and spreads after pollination (VT/R1) when the number of spores in the air is high and the weather becomes favorable for infection. Depending on where you are in the state, VT/R1 usually occurs sometime in mid-July. Planting late does not prevent spores from building up or conditions from becoming favorable for the gray leaf spot fungus to infect plant in mid-July, however, the primary difference it that instead of infecting plants at the VT/R1 growth state, the fungus will be infecting plants at a much earlier growth stage, V8-V12, for instance. If the hybrid is susceptible and conditions become favorable, high levels of infection at V8-V12 will result in greater and more rapid diseases development, and consequently, greater damage to the upper leaves before grain-fill is complete. This is also true for NCLB, eye spot, and southern rust.


So, what should I do: Given the scenario described above, the obvious questions are “should I spray my field e arlier this year?” and “will I see a greater benefit from treating my field at V10 or V12 than at VT/R1?” Remember, regarding of when infections occur, disease development and yield loss still depend on how susceptible the hybrid is and how favorable weather conditions become, particularly during pollinations and early grain-fill. Since 2010, we have mimicked the scenario of early infection by planting highly susceptible hybrids into no-till fields that were planted back-to-back-to-back to corn. These were fields with very high spore numbers. We then compared early (V5-7) applications of several different fungicides to VT/R1 and V5+R1 applications. In all cases, we found that applications made at silking (R1) or tasseling (VT) were the most effective in terms of foliar disease control and yield response. Although we did see a yield benefit to treatments applied between V5 and V10 in some years, the average yield increase was often lower and more variable with the early applications compared to the VT/R1 applications. Similarly, on average, the yield response was much lower and more variable when fungicides were used under low disease pressure or in the absence of foliar diseases. Over the years we have found that fungicides tend to be most profitable and the yield response most consistent when conditions are favorable for disease development and susceptible hybrids are planted, especially in a no-till, continuous-corn field. Follow the labels and keep your eyes on the fungicide price and application cost when making a decision. Below are the guidelines commonly used for making fungicide application decisions:

  • Susceptible hybrids: If disease symptoms are present on the third leaf below the ear or higher on 50% of the plants examined, a fungicide is recommended.
  • Intermediate hybrids:  If disease symptoms are present on the third leaf below the ear or higher on 50% of the plants examined, AND the field is in an area with a history of foliar disease problems, the previous crop was corn, and there is 35% or more surface residue, and the weather is warm and humid through July and August, a fungicide is recommended.
  • Resistant hybrids:  Fungicide applications generally are not recommended.


But this year is very different! Indeed, it is, and the approach for scouting for diseases will have to be different as well. You will have to scout fields more carefully and frequently, and look for multiple diseases developing simultaneously  – the crop is developing fast, and diseases will likely spread quickly as well, if the weather is favorable. Look for regular diseases like eye spot, GLS, NCLB and common rust; be on the lookout for explosives and damaging diseases like southern rust; and keep your eyes out for emerging diseases like tar spot.  Eye Spot – Small circular to oval lesions, with a tan to grayish center and a yellowish halo, beginning on the leaves below the ear and progressing up the plant. This disease tends to be very common in no-till fields, and is favored my moderate temperatures and abundant rainfall. Gray leaf spot (GLS) – Grayish, rectangular lesions that develop first on the leaves below the ear. This disease usually begins developing close to or after tasseling and is favored by warm, humid conditions. Like eye spot, gray leaf spot also tends to be more of a concern in no-till corn fields. Northern Corn Leaf Blight (NCLB) – This is another residue-borne disease that develops best under wet, humid conditions. However, it prefers slightly cooler conditions than those favorable for the development of gray leaf spot. Lesions are large, cigar-shaped and gray-green to tan in color. Common Rust – This is not a residue-borne disease, as such, its development is not affected by crop rotation and tillage. Spores are blown in from the south. Like northern corn leaf blight, it develops best under cool, humid conditions. The symptoms are large, cinnamon-brown, elongated pustules scattered over both surfaces of the leaf. Do not confuse common rust with the more damaging Southern Rust which produces smaller, circular, reddish-orange pustules, predominantly on the upper surface of the leaf, and occasionally on the stems and husks. Southern rust develops best under warm, humid conditions. Tar spot is new to Ohio. It was detected for the first time in 2018. The symptoms are raised circular, brown to black lesions scattered across both surfaces of the leaf. It is favored by moderate temperatures, high relative humidity, and extended periods of leaf wetness, and is often more severe in no-till, continuous-corn fields.



Brown County 4H Tech Changemakers Launch 1st Program

Brown County 4-H’ers launched the 4-H Tech Changemakers program at their Information Literacy class this week! They taught participants how to use various techniques and tools to get accurate results from internet searches. We used digital tools for weed identification and pest management while learning how to find credible sources. A BIG thank you to Adams Brown Community Action Partnership for allowing us to use their equipment and facility!

Through a partnership between The National 4-H Council and Microsoft, Brown County youth will be teaching digital skills throughout the community. More programs will be announced soon! Contact the Brown County Extension Office if you are interested in attending any upcoming programs.

USDA Releases Details on the 2019 Market Facilitation Payments

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has released the details about the 2019 Market Facilitation Payments (MFP). In 2019, the payments will be based on planted acres and not per bushel. Each county will have a different payment rate. See the list of the Ohio payment rates below.

Payments will be split into 3 rounds (50%, 25%, 25%) with only the first round guaranteed at this time. More details can be found on the following website: https://www.farmers.gov/manage/mfp



Climate Smart Program Being Held in Plain City

Thursday July 18, 2019: The Ohio State University Extension and the State Climate Office of Ohio will be hosting CLIMATE SMART: Farming with Weather Extremes, to be held at Der Dutchman in Plain City, Ohio.

“Planting season 2019 has tested the limits of resilience for many of us across Ohio. How anomalous has the weather been? Does this fit current trends? How likely are we to experience this again? Join us as we discuss climate impacts on farming in Ohio, water management, price and production risk, and a whole lot more!”

Link to flyer: Climate Smart Flyer


Agenda is as follows:
8:30 – Registration & Continental Breakfast
9:15 – Welcome
9:20 – Ohio’s Changing Climate (Aaron Wilson)
10:10 – Water Management (Jeff Hattey)
11:00 – Break
11:10 – Price and Production Risk (Ben Brown)
12:00 – Lunch, Networking, & Vendors
1:00 – Keynote: Nebraska Flooding Spring 2019 (Tyler Williams)
2:00 – Panel Discussion (Fred Yoder, Paul Pullins, Corey Hendricks, Liza and Bennett Musselman)
2:55 – Program Close and Evaluation


Deadline: Thursday, July 11, 2019
Cost: Free
Location: Der Dutchman, Plain City, OH
Aaron Wilson

For more details on how you can be a vendor at the event, please contact Amanda Douridas (douridas.9@osu.edu; 937-484-1526) or Aaron Wilson (wilson.1010@osu.edu; 614-292-7930).

Resources for 2019 Agricultural Challenges

The challenging weather has created numerous “firsts” for producers throughout Brown County and the entire nation but the extreme weather has also brought numerous first-time changes to policies and rules.  Over the last year, many new changes have taken place and new aid programs have been installed. Just as the weather from day-to-day, all of these changes can be difficult to keep track of. So, OSU Extension has worked to put together a FAQ page to answer a few of the common questions. This is a newly developed page and more information will be added to this each week.

The following link will take you to the page that addresses several questions about Market Facilitation Payments, disaster aid, cover crops on prevented planting acres, dairy production, and farm stress. Click the “FAQs” title below to follow the link or visit: https://u.osu.edu/2019farmassistance/faqs/



What to do about Nitrogen Fertilizer in Corn?

The persistent rain this year may force many growers to sidedress their nitrogen in corn much later than what is considered normal. Other growers may be supplementing their earlier N applications to replace N lost from denitrification and leaching. The following are some suggestions based on common questions we’ve been hearing.

Do I need additional N?

Nitrogen is one the most dynamic crop nutrients in the soil and has many pathways for loss. It’s leaky nature plus the fact that crops need it in such large quantities makes the task of knowing exactly how much N to apply very challenging. The excessive water this spring has clearly driven losses in many fields, but how much? Recent research at Ohio State has shown that ear leaf N, soil nitrate and grain yields were significantly reduced after just 2 days of standing water in the field. So N losses can occur quickly with excessive water.

What tools can help me determine if I need additional N?

A perfect indicator of N need does not exist, but some tools can help. Crop sensing tools like NDVI meters or crop sensing aerial imagery can provide insight if they are used routinely. Soil-based tests can also monitor N availability. Soil nitrate is the most widely-available and vetted test. A value of 25 ppm or higher indicates that there is sufficient N. More information can be found here: https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2017-20/manure-psnt-and-n-recommendations Ongoing research at Ohio State is looking to develop soil health indicators that can provide insight into how much N will be available over the growing season.

How late can N be applied?

Corn typically takes up less than 1 pound/ acre of N before the V4 stage, but N uptake rates will increase dramatically through tasseling. N uptake does continue beyond tasseling and into grain fill, but at much lower rates. Research at Ohio State and Purdue has shown that if sidedress applications are not made due to saturated conditions, rescue N fertilizer applications can increase yields and reduce the negative impact of flooding. Note these responses are much more likely to occur in fields that had high N loss conditions (excessive water).
How much N should be applied?
This is a difficult question to answer, it’s important to keep in mind that yield potential of corn can be severely restricted by excessive stress in the early phases. But corn that has simply grown too tall to sidedress might not have been severely stressed and yield potential could still be good. The potential of N loss and the extent of stress should be considered when determining N rates. It’s also important to consider the likelihood of economic return to invested N fertilizer. This economic model is used to maximize farmer profitability: http://go.osu.edu/corn-n-rate

What is the best N source to use?

This choice will likely be driven by application equipment, but best practices for minimizing N losses should be considered and practiced if at all possible. Consider that N losses can increase as the growing season progresses and soil and air temperatures rise. For example, if broadcasting with urea, consider a stabilizer such as Agrotain to minimize volatilization losses.