Field Observations Thru May 26


Most of our first cutting is complete.  If you have not mowed yet continue to monitor for alfalfa weevil.  As regrowth starts begin to monitor for potato leafhopper.


What a difference a week makes.  Most of our corn is now planted and about 50% has emerged.


Soil Crusting

Soil crusting is still an issue.  Continue to scout for emergence problems.  A few fields saw a return of the rotary hoe to help break the crust and aid in crop emergence.


Like corn, bean planting is coming to an end.  Soil crusting is also an issue in many of our bean fields. Continue to scout these fields for emergence problems.  Read more here.


Slug damage was a problem early in a few fields.  The forecasted warm and dry weather should help to eliminate this problem.



Scout for disease and insects:

Cereal Leaf Beetle Scouting Information

Powdery Mildew Scouting information

Head Scab Scouting Information

Most of our wheat is nearing a time when a decision must be made.  All of the wheat fields that I have looked at are showing no signs of disease pressure.  Here are some factors to consider

  1. No existing disease pressure
  2. The head scab forecast system is showing a very low chance of scab
  3. Fungicide cost can range from $12 – $18/acre plus application charges
  4. New crop wheat price is hovering around $6.20/bushel
  5. The 6 – 10 day precipitation outlook is for below normal rainfall and mild temperatures.


Field Observations Thru May 19

Throughout the growing season I will post information on different pests or issues I am seeing in our fields in Knox County.

We are making a lot of planting progress this week.  Maybe not the most ideal conditions, but, we are getting seeds in the ground!  Below are a some to observations to keep an eye on.


Not many changes this week, continue to scout fields for Alfalfa Weevil.

Click here for Alfalfa Weevil Scouting Guide




Soil Crusting

When heavy rains occur after planting, soil crusting can become a concern, inducing a shallow hard layer on the soil surface that forms due to rapid drying (e.g., warm days and wind).  This can affect seedling emergence.  Click here for more information.

Planting Depth

Occasionally check and verify planting depth.  When we get in a hurry sometimes we let a few things slide.  Improper planting depth can haunt you later in the season.

Plant Stand

Most of our early planted corn has emerged.

Now is a good time to take a few stand counts to evaluate your plant stand.  For 30 inch rows, measure 17′ 5″ and count the number of plants.  Multiply the number of plants you count by 1,000 to determine your plant stand.  Click here for more information.  Plant Stand Table

Click here to read the following post from OSU Agronomists Osler Ortez, Laura Lindsey, Alexander Lindsey


Same story as corn.  Check for emergence issues, planting depth and stand counts for early planted beans.  Check back next week for more detailed information on these issues.


Continue to scout wheat, especially if you are considering a fungicide application.  More information can be found in this post.

If You Planted and Heavy Rainfall Affected Your Fields…

Source: Osler Ortez, Laura Lindsey, OSU Extension

According to the USDA-NASS report for the week ending 05/14/23, 26% of Ohio’s corn and 28% of Ohio’s soybean acres were planted. About 8% of corn and soybean was reported emerged.

Heavy rainfall (1-2 inches of rain) events were reported for some areas of Ohio last week. Heavy rainfall can negatively affect planted and emerged fieldsplanted and non-emerged fields, and yet-to-be-planted fields. If you are in one of the areas with concerns about heavy rainfall, below is a summary of topics that one should consider (Table 1).

Table 1. Topics, considerations, and takeaways for corn and soybean fields are affected by heavy rainfall this season.

The bottom line is that seed damage due to abiotic factors can affect seedling vigor, plant growth, and crop establishment, ultimately reducing crop stands and yields. We recommend weighing the above considerations if you are affected by heavy rainfall this crop season.

Field Observations Thru May 12

Throughout the growing season I will post information on different pests or issues I am seeing in our fields in Knox County.  This week Mother Nature is finally cooperating, a little, and we are starting to make some planting progress.  Below are a some to observations to keep an eye on.


Continue to scout fields for Alfalfa Weevil.

Click here for Alfalfa Weevil Scouting Guide




Finally, we are planting!  While conditions are not perfect, we are able to get some seeds in the ground!

Most of our early planted corn has sprouted, some has finally begun to emerge.  As you evaluate your plant stand, do not be too concerned, yet – it is still early!

Click here to read the following post from OSU Agronomists Osler Ortez, Laura Lindsey, Alexander Lindsey


Same story as corn.  Early planted soybeans are beginning to emerge. As you evaluate your plant stand, do not be too concerned, yet – it is still early!

Click here to read the following post from OSU Agronomists Osler Ortez, Laura Lindsey, Alexander Lindsey


Trapped heads in Wheat.  While rare, I have seen this before. It looks like the heads are trapped in the boot.  This is usually a weather related issue.

Under warm conditions, the heads are pushed out of the leaf sheath quickly, but when it’s cold/cool, the process is slower, causing the heads to get trapped.  This is particularly problematic on awned varieties.  This issue could cause some constriction and affect grain full at the tips of the head, but usually not a major cause for concern.  

Click here for more information

We are still very early, but if crop stands are a concern…

Source: Osler Ortez, Laura Lindsey, Alexander Lindsey

We are still early, but if you planted in April or the first few days of May, soil conditions have been wet and cold in many parts of the state. Early plantings, cold air/soil temperatures, and precipitation cause slow progress in corn and soybean.  Corn and soybean plants slowly emerge from the ground under wet soil conditions.

One of the downsides of planting early is the risk of seeds sitting too long in the field. Seed damage (biotic or abiotic) can lead to reduced stands in planted fields. Factors to consider are imbibitional chilling, frost damage, seed treatment duration/viability, insect/disease damage, soil crusting, and standing water. These factors (or combinations) can negatively affect seedling vigor, plant growth, crop establishment, ultimately reducing crop stands. If reduced stands are a concern, a potential solution is to replant fieldsHowever, we are still early to make accurate assessments of crop stands.

Our 101 recommendation now is to wait… Crop stands should be assessed after ‘stable’ and ‘better’ conditions are achieved (e.g., warmer temperatures, adequate soil moisture conditions):

  • For corn, past work has shown that 50% emergence can be expected following accumulation of 150 soil GDDs (base of 50°F) from planting, about 5-7 days under normal conditions (much longer under cold/wet as areas of Ohio have been).
  • For soybean, assess the stands no earlier than the VC growth stage. Visual stand assessment at the VE growth stage often underestimates the number of plants that will emerge.

Figure 2.

Often, hasty decisions are not the best. When replanting decisions on early planted acres are made, one should be careful about getting more plants than necessary in the field. In the following picture (Figure 2), the first set of soybeans was planted early and took a long time to emerge from the ground. So, a replanting decision was made (replanted at an angle). Once the weather conditions turned better, the first planting and replanting came up, in which case the replant was unnecessary. We suggest caution when replanting decisions are made.

Soybean Planter Considerations

Click on the video below to watch Dr. John Fulton discuss soybean planter considerations and recommendations to meet a variety of field conditions we may face this spring.  Dr. Fulton specifically talks about:

  1. Downforce pressure for consistent seed depth
  2. Adjustments due to soil variability
  3. Row-unit settings
  4. Comments on speed tubes

Soybean Diseases are Showing up in Ohio

by: Horacio Lopez-Nicora, Stephanie Karhoff, OSU Extension

In early August we recommended to start scouting fields for soybean diseases. At that time (two weeks ago), disease incidence across Ohio was very low to moderate. Conducive environmental conditions, however, are turning things around and more fields are developing disease symptoms.

Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS)
We are finding fields in Ohio severely affected by sudden death syndrome (SDS) [Fig.1 and Fig. 2]. SDS is caused by the fungal pathogen Fusarium virguliforme. This species is the most prevalent in the region, however, other Fusarium species can cause SDS. SDS above-ground symptoms can be confused with those produced by a different fungus (Cadophora gregata) that causes brown stem rot (BSR). To distinguish SDS from BSR, symptomatic plants should be dug out and stem cut open longitudinally. SDS-infected plants have white, healthy-looking pith, while BSR-infected plants present brown discoloration of the pith. Moreover, fields with severe SDS symptoms can also have high levels of soybean cyst nematode (SCN). Visit here for more information on SDS.

Figure 1. Soybean field in south Ohio severely affected by sudden death syndrome (SDS) with premature defoliation in the R5/R6 growth stage (A); symptoms begin with interveinal yellowing (chlorosis) of leaf (B); eventually leaf tissue dies and becomes brown but veins remain green (C). The fungus infects the root and produces toxins that are responsible for the above-ground symptoms.

If you have SDS, we encourage you to submit a sample to the Soybean Pathology and Nematology Laboratory in the Department of Plant Pathology at The Ohio State University in Columbus (see address below). We will confirm if it is SDS or BSR; additionally, if it is SDS, we want to determine what Fusarium species is the causal agent. To submit samples, dig out three to five symptomatic plants (including roots), placed them in a plastic bag, and submit them to our lab. Do not hesitate to contact your extension educator or us if you have any questions.

Bacterial Blight, White Mold, and Phytophthora Root and Stem Rot

Continue reading

Double Crop Soybean Management Considerations


Wheat harvest is just around the corner, and it’s time to consider double-crop soybean production management. For double-crop soybean to be successful, you need adequate time and moisture for the production of the soybean crop. In southern Ohio, double-crop soybean after wheat harvest is common. In central and northern Ohio, double-crop soybean after winter wheat depends on the wheat harvest date and soybean prices. With high soybean prices, we anticipate interest in double-crop soybean production in central and northern Ohio this year.

Double-crop soybean management considerations.

  1. Soybean relative maturity. Relative maturity (RM) has little effect on yield when soybeans are planted during the first three weeks of May. However, the effect of RM can be larger for late plantings. When planting soybean late, the latest maturing variety that will reach physiological maturity before the first killing frost is recommended. This is to allow the soybean plants to grow vegetatively as long as possible to produce nodes where pods can form before vegetative growth is slowed due to flowering and pod formation.

Table 1. Recommended relative maturity (RM) ranges for soybean varieties planted in June and July in northern, central, and southern Ohio.

  1. Row spacing. Double-crop soybeans should be produced in narrow rows- 7.5 or 15-inch row spacing. The later soybeans are planted, the greater the yield increase due to narrow rows. Soybeans grown in narrow rows produce more grain because they capture more sunlight energy, which drives photosynthesis.
  1. Seeding rate. The soybean plant population at harvest for mid-to-late June plantings should be between 130,000-150,000 plants/acre. The harvest population for early July plantings should be greater than 180,000 plants/acre. Harvest population is a function of seeding rate, quality of the planter operation, and seed germination percentage and depends on such things as soil moisture condition, seed-soil contact, and disease pressure.