OSU Extension Seeking Farmer Cooperators for Fallow Syndrome eFields Trial

By:  Stephanie Karhoff, OSU Extension

Wet weather conditions last spring prevented Ohio farmers from planting over 1,485,919 acres (USDA-Farm Service Agency Crop Acreage Data). When fields are left unplanted or fallow, there may be a decline in beneficial mycorrhizal fungi, which is commonly referred to as fallow syndrome.

Mycorrhizae are beneficial fungi that colonize plant roots. They aid plants in scavenging for soil nutrients, by extending the root system via thread-like structures called hyphae. In return, plants provide sugars produced during photosynthesis to the mycorrhizae.

Phosphorus deficiency in corn. Photo: OSU Extension.

Stunting and phosphorus deficiency are common symptoms associated with fallow syndrome.

The impact of fallow syndrome on crop yields is unclear. The goal of this on-farm trial is to investigate the yield impacts of fallow syndrome and the efficacy of potential remediation options in Ohio, such as phosphorus applications or soil additives. Information from this trial will be used to improve management recommendations for growers throughout the state.

If you have fields that were not planted in 2019 and will be planted to corn in 2020 and are interested in being involved in this trial, call  your local OSU Extension Agricultural and Natural Resources Extension Educator..

eFields is a program at The Ohio State University program dedicated to advancing production agriculture through field-scale research. To learn more, contact your local county Extension office or visit digitalag.osu.edu.

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