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Showing posts from September, 2014

Soybean Stem Diseases - Knowing What You May be Seeing in the Fields

By Dean Malvick, Extension Plant Pathologist
Given that the leaves on most of the soybean crop in Minnesota have turned color or dropped due to maturity or frost, symptoms of stem disease may be easy to see. Root rot diseases are also widespread, but they are difficult to scout for and diagnose. This article covers the basics of how to recognize and diagnose common late-season soybean stem diseases in Minnesota.

Is it Time to Evaluate Your Starter Fertilizer Program?

By Daniel Kaiser, Extension Soil Fertility Specialist
Utilization of liquid fertilizer sources placed directly on the seed at planting has become commonplace in many areas of Minnesota. However, low corn prices as well as challenging planting conditions over the past two growing seasons have caused many to question certain aspects of their overall fertility program.  There are a few suggestions that can be used to ensure the best chance for a profitable return on investment.

Diseases In The Soybean Fields: What Has Been Happening In Minnesota in 2014?

Dean Malvick, Extension Plant Pathologist
Soybean crop conditions have been highly variable across Minnesota, as has been the soybean disease situation. Rhizoctonia root and stem rot was widespread in June and early July. Seedling diseases of various types and Phytophthora root and stem rot were also reported early in the season.Since then several mid to late season soybean diseases have appeared in multiple fields, including pod and stem blight at significant levels, and sudden death syndrome, brown stem rot, and white mold.

Should you skip the Bt traits in your 2015 corn crop to cut production costs?

Bruce Potter, Integrated Pest Management Specialist, and Ken Ostlie, Extension Entomologist
For many farmers, the economics of corn production have shifted from maximizing profit to minimizing losses per acre. Many are understandably trying to find ways to cut input costs for the 2015 crop. One area that some have targeted for potentially reducing costs is hybrid selection. Planting corn hybrids without Bt protection for European corn borer, corn rootworm or both will greatly reduce seed costs. It can also reduce crop revenues if done without considering yield potential and insect populations.

Diseases In The Corn Fields: What Has Been Happening In Minnesota?

Dean Malvick, Extension Plant Pathologist
Corn production has faced challenges in fields across Minnesota this growing season. The season started wet with planting delays in numerous areas and is ending with warm weather after frost hit many fields last week. Diseases were also highly variable as usual across Minnesota. This article highlights frequently reported disease problems across the state, namely rust, northern leaf blight, Goss's wilt, and most recently stalk rots.

Managing stored grain to minimize storage losses

by Phil Glogoza and Dave Nicolai, Extension Educators-Crops
When grain harvest approaches, it is time to review basic on-farm grain storage principles for maintaining quality of stored commodities. Harvest should include preparation of storage structures to receive grain. Preparation includes several practices that aid in preventing pest infestations from developing within our storage structures.

Got Weeds? Evaluate Your Weed Control Program

By Lizabeth Stahl, Extension Educator in Crops and Jeff Gunsolus, Extension Agronomist, Weed Science

By the end of the growing season, it is not too hard to spot soybean fields where weed control was less than optimal.  Prior to harvest, waterhemp can be found towering over soybean canopies throughout Minnesota.  Taking some time to evaluate effectiveness of your weed control program now can help enhance future weed control and ultimately protect yield potential and enhance profitability in the long run. 

Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary Sept. 4, 2014

by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties by phone, if a local call to Foley 968-5077 or 1-800-964-4929
In this edition:
Sept. 4 Hay Auction Results (Average corrected for Large Round Alfalfa 151-175 RFV)FrostSome Corn Silage ReadyDairy Farm Bill Meetings Continue Reading for Links to reports, and related information

Mid-September frost on corn and soybeans

Seth Naeve, Extension Soybean Agronomist, Jeff Coulter, Extension Corn Agronomist, Dave Nicolai, Extension Educator - Crops, and Phyllis Bongard, Educational Content Development and Communications Specialist

Figure 1. Frost effects on corn in Dakota County following a September 13th early morning frost indicating increased upper canopy damage in lower elevations of the field. Many corn and soybean fields in central, west central, and southwest Minnesota were affected by frost during the morning hours of September 13, 2014. As is always the case, the frost damage appears to be highly variable based on local climate conditions, crop maturity, and topographical features. For corn, a killing freeze occurs when temperatures are 32°F for 4 hours or 28°F for minutes. A frost or killing freeze can still occur when temperatures are above 32°F, especially in low and unprotected areas when there is no wind. For soybeans, most reports indicated that the crop was unaffected, 'nipped'…

Phosphorus Fertilizer Considerations for Fall 2014

Daniel Kaiser, Fabian Fernandez, and John Lamb
Extension Nutrient Management Specialists
This week of cool weather has made it clear that fall is fast approaching.  The drop in commodity prices will likely cause a few conversations among farmers, consultants, and retailers on what fertilizer to apply for the 2015 cropping year.  Many fields are currently being soil sampled for phosphorus (P), this fall is a good time to consider what is actually out in the field to best target P fertilizer applications.

If taken properly, a soil sample can aid in determination of the responsiveness of a crop to a given nutrient.  Categories such as low, medium, and high, give a relative estimate of the soil's ability to fully satisfy the needs of a given crop.  For example, a soil testing low in P would have a very low probability of providing sufficient P while a soil testing high in P would have a high probability of supplying the full crops' needs.  Knowledge of the probability of response…

Nitrogen management for 2015

John Lamb, Fabian Fernandez, and Daniel Kaiser, Extension Soil Scientists - Nutrient Management
Labor Day has come and gone and now it is time to think about nitrogen (N) plans for next year. This news article will cover some thoughts about fall applications of N.

Soil sampling
If you plan to use a soil nitrate-N test, you need to wait until the soil temperature is below 50°F to get a soil test value that is useful for predicting fertilizer need.

Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary August 7, 2014

by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties by phone, if a local call to Foley 968-5077 or 1-800-964-4929
In this edition:
August 7, 2014 Hay Auction ResultsCorn Silage Pricing and Harvest Resources

Aug 7 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf
Individual lots sold are sorted and averaged by type and quality. With a limited number of loads for some groups, consider averages carefully.

History of Selected Lots 2013-2014.pdf Now includes averages and ranges for selected groups through the year, listed first along with previous 4 years on the first page and again on the last page. The season long average is calculated for the auctions from October through May.

Graph 2001 to 2014 SC Hay Auction plus J J Aug.pdf A line graph of for average from each sale 2001 to 2014 for Medium Square Alfalfa groups from 101 to 200 RFV. The June, July, August averages are hand marked on the right side of the graph.