From Across the Field: 4-2-2020

Being Lawn Ready

We are in the third week of telecommuting and even though it has taken a while to get used to, we have been able to get along fairly well. Don’t hesitate to call the office, as we are still able to serve the county. If interested in keeping up on agriculture and natural resources education over the next month or so, tune into OSU Extension Ag Madness. Each day a topic area “bracket” with be covered. Brackets range from produces safety to farm management to cover crops. Join the fun at

As temperature (slowly) begin to warm up this is a great time to prepare equipment for mowing lawns. We probably won’t be mowing as long as the ground is saturated but once we get a couple of warm dry days I look for grass to really green up and grow. Continue reading

From Across the Field: 3-6-2020

March Madness

First, I cannot believe that it is March already, it seems that February went by in a blur. March is here and that means March Madness. As a sports fan I hope to take in some postseason high school and college basketball in the coming weeks in between programs. In a typically year March is bit more toned downed from a programming standpoint, that appears not to be the case this year. I ought to have a talk with guy who makes my schedule a bit more often.

One upcoming program that I am excited to offer is our 2020 Feeding Cattle for the Consumer Series. This series tailored around the same concept as Beef 509, a two part program with both live and carcass evaluation. The first of the two-part series will be held at Southern Roots Ranch in West Unity on Thursday, March 19. Southern Roots Ranch is operated by Tyler Keckley and family. At that meeting we will talk cattle feeding nutrition, fed cattle evaluation, and estimate carcass characteristics. Continue reading

From Across the Field: 2-13-2020

Not All Roses

First off, thank you to all of the sponsors, exhibitors, speakers, and attendees of Northwest Ohio Crops Day last week in Deshler. For the third year in a row it was a cold snowy day, filled with excellent information with regards to the upcoming growing season. A few points that I took home were that our recent weather patterns have the potential to become trends as our climate changes. Another key point was that commodity outlooks for the coming year were rather guarded due to factors across the globe. I’m always amazed that they are able to get two corn crops in a year in Brazil, which impacts the amount of corn available on the global market. I sure hope this year is more cooperating than last. Continue reading

From Across the Field: 1/09/2020

Winter Happenings

It’s finally starting to feel like winter as the wind has gotten cold over the past couple of days. School is back in session, folks have made their resolutions, and the Buckeyes are no longer playing football; so bring on meeting season! After the first of the year things seem to ramp back up as we progress past the holidays. We continue to plan for Northwest Ohio Crops Day and the various other programs scheduled the first quarter of the year. Continue reading

From Across the Field – 12/5/2019

Tis the Season

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I had the opportunity to head south for an extended weekend, where I spent the holiday with friends and family. On Thanksgiving Day we head to Wadsworth, Ohio to spend time with Ruff side of the family. Always good to visit with the extended family that we don’t see as often as we probably should. I was also good to see another big Buckeye victory over TTUN, a great start to coach Day’s tenure in The Game.

On “Black Friday” the closest thing I did to going shopping was helping my dad at a bred heifer and cow sale. Needless to say we were not in the market for any “Black Friday” specials. This past Monday I also went deer hunting for a spell. It was almost too windy to sit and wait as the deer really weren’t moving. That said I’m not the most dedicated hunter, rather more the opportunistic type.

Now that Thanksgiving is in the rear-view mirror, bring on the Christmas music. Continue reading

From Across the Field – 10/31/2019

Older and Wiser?

Each year at the end of October I get an annual reminder that I am another year older. As a kid, my dad’s side of the family practiced the tradition of “Birthday Bumps”, where as long as you were small enough to lift, you were picked up and had you backside bumped against the wall, one each per year of age. These were always followed by “one to grow on, one to learn on, and one to behave on.”

Now as an adult, who hasn’t had to worry about being “bumped” for some time, I think our birthdays are a good time to reflect on what we have learned over the past year. This year, given the challenges brought to us by Mother Nature, everyone involved with agriculture had the opportunity to learn quite a bit. On one hand we learned that we’d rather not have a “2019 Spring” any time soon. On the other, farmers and landowners have learned how to manage planting delays, unplanted acres, annual forages, and cover crops among other things in a way that they haven’t before. Continue reading

From Across the Field – 10/17/2019

Here We Go Again

Fall is my favorite time of the year for a few different reasons, but it is also one of the busiest and most interesting times in the agricultural year. Not only is this year’s crop being harvested but there are many operations and decisions being made that will have major impacts on the coming year as well.

As I make observations around the county, soybean harvest has been progressing well, considering how scattered planting was this spring. For a historically late planted crop, yields I have heard have been acceptable, all things considered. Wheat planting is wrapping up and the large amount of prevented planting acres did allow for a large percentage of the wheat to be planted in a timely fashion. Tillage in preparation for next spring and tiling continue. I had one person ask how many miles of tile was installed this summer in the county. My answer: A lot, most since I have been here. Continue reading

From Across the Field – Farmer Appreciation Dinner Planned 9/26/19

Another fairly warm and dry week here in Northwest Ohio to help with crop development and maturation. Having been to Columbus once this week, once you get south of about Delaware, you begin to notice symptoms of drought. Talking to colleagues in the southern portions of the state, they have been dry over the past couple of months and that a lack of moisture during grain fill maybe a yield limiting factor. Back in Morgan county, my dad and brother baled 76 acres of hay over the weekend, in which the ground was dry enough to mow one day and bale the next. Last year making dry hay was next to impossible and this year just the opposite Continue reading

From Across the Field – Continuous Learning 9/11/2019

Now that we are into the second week of September, it certainly is feeling like fall outside. That is a bit concerning as we have acquired minimal growing degree units for crop development in Northwest Ohio over the past few days.

I write to you this week from our National Association of County Ag Agents meeting in the destination of Ft. Wayne, Indiana. This is my first time attending the meeting, having gave a presentation on Tuesday. It has been a great opportunity to network with colleagues and learn about what other Extension services offer, in terms of programming across their various states. Continue reading

From Across the Field – Playing Catch Up 9/4/19

Over the long weekend I had the opportunity to return to Morgan County to spend time with the family preparing for the county fair. The fair has always been a huge part of our Labor Day week, especially since my father has been on the fair board since my brother and I were done exhibiting Jr. Fair projects. I think for the first time maybe ever, we will not have any fair entries as our antique tractor is buried in the back of the hay barn.

As I drive around the county crop conditions look pretty good if I could just turn back the calendar to August. Talking to colleagues across the state they have been fooled by some earlier planted fields that are beginning to reach maturity as they forgot about the few timely planted fields, and that most are still looking dark green. Surprisingly the fields I have been have low disease prevalence, even though there are signs of plant stress in some fields. Continue reading