How Reliable will this Year’s Test Plot Data Be?

By: Laura Lindsey and Peter Thomison, OSU Extension

Ohio’s corn and soybean crops experienced exceptional growing conditions in 2019, including record rainfall in May and June followed by drier than normal August and September conditions in many areas. As a result of the early season saturated soils, corn and soybean planting was delayed across most of the state. For soybean, planting date is the most important cultural practice that influences grain yield. Planting date is also a major factor affecting crop performance and profitability in corn. The persistent rains and saturated soils caused localized ponding and flooding. These conditions resulted in root damage and N loss that led to uneven crop growth and development between and within fields. Agronomists often question the value of test plot data when adverse growing conditions severely limit yield potential. Continue reading

Weekly Outlook: Acreage in 2020

By: Todd Hubbs, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois. November 25, 2019. farmdoc daily (9):222

The 2019 crop year will live long in the memory.  A record amount of prevent plant acres, delayed harvest, and considerable dismay over USDA reports compounded the uncertainty associated with the trade war.   Speculation about the acreage levels in 2020 is already underway.  Current market conditions support acreage increases in corn and soybeans in 2020.  It appears only the magnitude of those increases is in doubt.

A variety of surveys and projections by industry analysts place 2020 corn acreage close to 94 million acres.  Soybean acreage projections come in around 84 million acres. Continue reading

From Across the Field – 11/7/2019

High Moisture Harvest

How it is November already, where did fall go? As things progress with harvest around the county, the intermittent rain sure hasn’t helped with the already slow crop dry down. With regards to corn specifically, we can estimate how quickly corn will dry in the field. Based on the forecast, if your corn is at 30% moisture now, in 10 days it will be about 25% moisture and by the end of the month it may reach 21%. If our current moisture is 25%, in 10 days it will be about 22% moisture and by the end of the month it may reach 20%. When looking at these numbers, it seems like corn is field drying well.

However, if we look at the forecast for corn at 20% now, the calculator predicts a moisture loss of less than half a point over the next 10 days and less than a point by the end of the month. Keep in mind, these are median predictions and if the weather model changes, we could see more-or-less field dry down. Continue reading

Assessing the Research Needs from the 2019 Production Year

By Greg LaBarge, CPAg/CCADee JepsenBen BrownAnne DorranceSam CusterJason Hartschuh, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

The 2019 production year has presented many challenges. Ohio State University Extension wants to be responsive to needs of the agricultural community. At short survey aimed at farmers to identify both short- and long-term outreach and research needs of Ohio crop and livestock/forage producers based on the 2019 farm crisis year has been developed. Questions relate to crop production, livestock forage needs, emergency forage success, economic and human stress concerns. Since challenges and concerns varied across the state, this survey is designed to assess needs on a county, regional and statewide basis. The study will be used to determine Extension programming and future research needs.

Please consider sharing your experiences at  https://go.osu.edu/ag2019.

More Active Fall Weather Pattern Ahead

By Jim Noel, NOAA

A more active weather pattern is ahead. We expect a weak to moderate storm with some rainfall every 3 to 4 days over the next few weeks.

For the week of Oct. 22, expect slightly above normal temperatures by a degree or two and rainfall between 0.25-0.75 inches on average. There could be some scattered freezing temperatures in the north and west sections of Ohio especially come Saturday morning.

For the last week of October, there should be early to mid week rainfall with another 0.25-1.00 inches followed by a surge of cold weather and the real possibility of the first widespread freeze toward Halloween.

The outlook for November is above normal temperatures after a cold start to the month and rainfall normal to above normal. The early trends suggest a turn to a wetter late winter and spring of 2020 but we will need to simply monitor that.

The next two weeks rainfall totals will generally range from 0.50 to 2 inches across the state.

Field Drying and Harvest Losses in Corn

By: Peter Thomison, OSU Extension

According to the USDA/NASS (https://www.nass.usda.gov/) as of Sunday, Oct. 27th, 37 percent of Ohio’s corn was harvested for grain, compared to 62 percent for last year and 56 percent for the five-year average. Late corn plantings and sporadic rain in some areas are not helping with field drying. Some growers are delaying harvest until grain moisture drops further. However, these delays increase the likelihood that stalk rots present in many fields will lead to stalk lodging problems. Leaving corn to dry in the field exposes a crop to unfavorable weather conditions, as well as wildlife damage. Continue reading

Are Modern Genetics Worth the Money?

By: Harold Watters, Ohio State University Extension

I have conducted a number of trials and comparisons over the years and generally have concluded that new is better when it comes to choosing a hybrid or variety. One such comparison I have been making over several years now is of a modern hybrid to open pollinated corn varieties. This may be used as a comparison for those who grow open pollinated corn for sale as organic, although I used herbicides here for weed control. For 2019, I compared a modern traited hybrid, an early modern traited hybrid, a modern open pollinated variety and several older open pollinated varieties. Continue reading

Tar Spot of Corn in Ohio Again this 2019

By: Pirece Paul, OSU Extension and Felipe Dall Lana da Silva, OSU Plant Pathology

Tar Spot, a new disease of corn caused by the fungus Phyllachora maydis, was reported for the first time in Ohio at the end of the 2018 growing season. At that time, it was found mostly in counties close to the Indiana border, as the disease continued to spread from the middle of country where it was first confirmed in 2015. Over the last few weeks, there have been several new, confirmed report of Tar Spot in Ohio, this time not only in the northwestern corner of the state, but also from a few fields in central and south-central Ohio. As was the case last year, disease onset was late again this year, with the first reports coming in well after R4. However, some of the regions affected last year had more fields affected this year, with much higher levels of disease severity. It could be that Tar Spot is becoming established in some areas of the state due to the fungus overwintering in crop residue from one growing season to another. This is very consistent with the pattern observed in parts of Indiana and Illinois where the disease was first reported. We will continue to keep our eyes out for Tar Spot, as we learn more about it and develop management strategies. You can help by looking for Tar Spot as you walk fields this fall, and please send us samples.      Tar Spot Continue reading

Managing Phosphorus for Yield and Reduced Edge of Field Losses

By: Greg LaBarge, CPAg/CCA, Ohio State University Extension

A new factsheet highlights eight steps to reducing edge of field P losses while maintain soils for increase crop production. The Phosphorus Nutrient Management for Yield and Reduced P Loss at Edge of Field-AGF-509 (https://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/agf-509) highlight practices that can be used to reduce edge of field losses of P. There are eight field specific steps to considered.

  1. Control erosion
  2. Identify surface inlets to tile and use appropriate practices to reduce surface losses
  3. Consider ground and weather conditions prior to application of fertilizer and manure
  4. Take a representative soil test
  5. Use soil test as screening tool to meet crop production and water quality goals
  6. With a soil test P value of 40 PPM Mehlich III or less, you can reduce risk of crop yield losses with nutrient application for crop yield.

Continue reading

Fall Fertilizer Considerations in 2019

By: Emerson Nafziger, Department of Crop Sciences University of Illinois. October 9, 2019. farmdoc daily (9):189

The high number of prevented-planting fields in some areas, the late start to harvest, and the inability to apply P and K fertilizer as planned last fall or this past spring combine to raise a number of questions about fall application of P, K, and lime over the next few months. Continue reading