From Across the Field – Keep Moving 8/14/19

Today marks the end of the 2019 Henry County Fair. Congratulations is due to all of the exhibitors for their successes at this year’s fair. A highlight of the fair and proper ending for livestock exhibitors is today’s Jr. Fair Livestock Sale. The Jr. Fair Sale is the culmination of upwards of a year for some exhibitors and as little as six weeks of hard work and dedication. Speaking from personal experience the youth remember the support the receive over the years.

All in all, I think most everybody had a good fair week. What I enjoy most is the conversations had throughout the week. One conversation the particularly stood out this week occurred with year’s beef judge, a recently retired OSU Extension agriculture agent from southern Ohio. He shared some advice that the best we can do is to “keep moving.” While simple, I think that is advice that anyone, especially young people should take to heart. As it relates to the fair, I certainly appreciate those young folks that have “kept moving” throughout the week, working hard to best represent themselves and help others as well. Continue reading

Assessing The Risk of Frost Injury to Late Planted Corn

By: Peter Thomison, OSU Extension

Lately I have received questions as to whether corn at various stages of development, especially the blister (R2) and dough stage (R3) stages, will mature before the 50% average frost date. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, as of August 18, 37 percent of Ohio’s corn acreage was in the dough stage (R4) compared to 70 percent for the five year average, and three percent of the corn acreage was in the dent stage (R5) compared to 21 percent for the five-year average. Many areas of the state corn are considerably behind the five-year average because of late planting. Late maturation of the corn crop had led to questions about the likelihood for frost damage and whether more fuel will be needed to dry corn.

Physiological maturity (R6), when kernels have obtained maximum dry weight and black layer has formed, typically occurs about 65 days after silking. At physiological maturity (kernel moisture approximately 30-35%), frosts have little or no effect on the yield potential of the corn crop. Continue reading

Harvest Management of Sorghum Forages

By: Marc Sulc and Bill Weiss, OSU Extension

Many producers in Ohio have planted summer annual grasses this year to increase their low forage inventories. These include sudangrass, sorghum-sudangrass, forage sorghum, pearl millet, and teff grass. When should these grasses be harvested or grazed?

The general guidelines for harvesting or grazing these summer annual grasses as listed in the Ohio Agronomy Guide are shown in the table below. Continue reading

BQA: One Year Later

By: Garth Ruff, Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Ohio State University Extension, Henry County (originally published in The Ohio Cattleman summer issue)

Early last year I wrote an article titled Understanding Customer Relations in a Changing Beef Industry, which examined the factors that drove the demand for cattle producers to complete Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) training.

Now after a years’ time, with nearly 100 in-person trainings taught, and almost 7,250 Ohio cattle producers BQA certified in-person and another 2,100 online, where do things stand?

As a refresher, the push to have producers trained in BQA was at the request of Tyson, one of the major packers’ decision to only source fed cattle from cattle feeders certified in BQA by 2019. Tyson’s decision was largely due to the commitment of Wendy’s to do the same, at the demand of their customers. As we have seen in all segments of food production the consumer, now more than ever, wants to know how their food is produced. Often in the case of meat, consumers want to be assured that the animal was raised humanely and cared for under good production practices, the basic principles of any livestock quality assurance program. Continue reading

Questions about Corn Crop Continue

By: Todd Hubbs, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois. farmdoc Daily.

The USDA’s August crop production forecast delivered a shock to corn markets with much larger production than expected.  Market participants continue to question the size of the 2019 corn crop, in particular, harvested acreage and yield come in for much speculation.

Producers reported they planted 90 million acres of corn and intended to harvest 82 million acres for grain.  Initial reaction to 90 million planted acres with 11.2 million acres of prevent plant corn approached complete disbelief.  The switch into corn acres happened for both the prevented planting decisions and crop planting.  The expansion of corn acres reduced soybean acres in particular.  When matched with FSA data on reported planted acres, the possibility of USDA lowering planted corn acreage by a significant amount this year seems very low. Continue reading

From Across the Field – Summer’s Last Blast 8/7/19

The county fair opens today and while hard to believe, it is once again a sign that summer is on the downhill slide. Here’s to hoping for good weather throughout the fair, even though a nice rain or two would be welcome as crops to continue to grow and develop.

This week many of the 4-H and FFA youth will be exhibiting their projects ranging from livestock to art and woodworking. Growing up, I always enjoyed exhibiting both swine and beef cattle at the Morgan County Fair. I also had the opportunity to travel to numerous other county fairs with my father to bid on and load livestock for the livestock auction that he manages. At every fair I have ever been to, the highlight is always the Jr. Fair programs. Continue reading

August USDA Reports

By:Todd Hubbs, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics University of Illinois. farmdoc Daily online

The highly anticipated August Crop Production report contained a larger than expected production forecast for the 2019 U.S. corn crop.  Soybean production came in lower on smaller acreage.

For corn, the USDA lowered harvested acres to 82 million acres, but this came in above expectations of 80 million acres.  Corn planted acreage totaled 90 million acres.  When combined with a Farm Service Agency projection of 11.2 million acres of prevent plant corn, the total corn base appears to exceed 101 million acres in 2019.  The U.S. corn yield forecast of 169.5 bushels per acre exceeded trade expectations by 4.6 bushels.  The projected corn crop is 700 million bushels larger than the average trade guess at 13.9 billion bushels.  As expected due to poor crop condition ratings, the eastern Corn Belt yield projections came in at lower levels than last year. Continue reading

Estimating Yield Losses in Stressed Corn Fields

By: Peter Thomison, OSU Extension

Many corn fields are still silking (and some are just past the mid-vegetative stages)….so, it may seem a little early to discuss estimating grain yields. However, according to the most recent  NASS crop report, for the week ending Aug. 8, 2019,  25% of the corn crop has reached the dough stage (compared to 63% for the 5 year average). Corn growers with drought damaged fields and late plantings may want to estimate grain yields prior to harvest in order to help with marketing and harvest plans. Two procedures that are widely used for estimating corn grain yields prior to harvest are the YIELD COMPONENT METHOD (also referred to as the “slide rule” or corn yield calculator) and the EAR WEIGHT METHOD. Continue reading

Keep an Eye on Crop Diseases

Source: OSU Extension

Late-planted corn and soybeans could be vulnerable to higher-than-normal levels of crop diseases this year. When sown one to two months later than usual, corn and soybeans stand a greater chance of succumbing, especially, to fungal diseases.

Dry weather across much of Ohio since July has helped stave off some disease spread because fungal diseases need moisture to thrive. Still, during a year when late planting has already limited the yield potential on crops, it’s critical to be watchful for other threats too, including all types of diseases, molds, and insects, advise experts with Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES). Continue reading

Prevented Planting Acres Announced For 2019

Agricultural producers reported they were not able to plant crops on more than 19.4 million acres in 2019, according to a new report released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This marks the most prevented plant acres reported since USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) began releasing the report in 2007 and 17.49 million acres more than reported at this time last year.

Of those prevented plant acres, more than 73% were in 12 Midwestern states, where heavy rainfall and flooding this year has prevented many producers from planting mostly corn, soybeans and wheat. Continue reading