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Showing posts from January, 2019

Manure applied on frozen soil or snow - what will happen to my nitrogen?

By Melissa Wilson, manure management and water quality Extension specialist

It was a tough fall for manure application. In many places of the state it was wet and harvest was delayed. On top of that, winter arrived earlier than it has in the past couple of years. Many people were forced to apply manure on top of frozen soils or even snow. We’ve gotten a lot of questions about how the nitrogen in the manure will be impacted.

When manure is applied on the surface of frozen soils or on top of snow, we have two concerns. First, it cannot seep into the ground, so if there is any runoff in your fields, it can carry the manure to low spots or away from the field entirely which may cause environmental issues. We have already seen widespread rain in December across southern Minnesota and snow melt in January in many parts of the state. Fields with higher amounts of residue are less likely to have as much runoff as fields with low residue, so this problem may be worse in some fields and not oth…

Updated list of aphid-resistant soybean varieties available for Minnesota

by Siddhi Bhusal, Anthony Hanson, Aaron Lorenz and Robert Koch

An updated list of commercially available aphid-resistant soybean varieties that are suitable to grow in Minnesota can be found in a revised version of an Extension publication titled, Aphid-Resistant Soybean Varieties for Minnesota. Soybean aphid is one of the major pests of soybean in Minnesota, causing significant yield loss. Management of soybean aphid has relied on foliar insecticides, but insecticide resistance has developed in this pest and poses a challenge for soybean production. Planting aphid-resistant soybean varieties can help to reduce insecticide inputs, and thereby decrease selection pressure for further development of insecticide resistance. Aphid-resistant soybean varieties can provide an effective, economical, and more environmentally sustainable means of protecting soybean from soybean aphid. Soybean breeders have developed soybean varieties that carry aphid-resistance traits, in addition to other promi…

2019 Commercial Animal Waste Technician (CAWT) Recertification Workshops

By Chryseis Modderman, Extension educator – crops, manure management

There are several upcoming opportunities for Minnesota commercial manure haulers to attend the Commercial Animal Waste Technician (CAWT) workshops.

Topics in the 2019 workshops include:CAWT program update – presented by the MDARegulations update for haulers – presented by the DOTNutrient availability in manure: what, when, where – presented by University of Minnesota ExtensionApplying manure in extreme conditions – presented by MPCA and University of Minnesota ExtensionManure gas safety – presented by University of Minnesota Extension
Get more details, including dates and locations.

Each workshop has a base fee of $10, though certain locations may be more due to lunch being provided.

New this yearOnline registration! Though online registration is encouraged, walk-in registration will also be available at each location (cash, credit/debit card, and check accepted at the door).Commercial Animal Waste Applicators will no…

Winter barley

Jochum Wiersma, Small grains specialist, Becky Zhong, Research assistant
The arctic cold snap of the past two days may have you doubt the data. However, climatologist are sure that Minnesota’s winter are getting milder and wetter while the summers are getting more humid with nighttime lows creeping higher. The latter is especially worrisome for production of high quality malting barley.

Transitioning from a summer annual growth habit where you seed the crop in early spring and harvest the crop the same growing season to a winter annual where you seed the crop the previous fall and harvest it the next summer is a way to better exploit growing conditions that favor cool season annuals like barley and wheat. The winter growth habit allows these cool season crops to mature earlier, thereby escaping the summer heat that affects yield and quality adversely.

While winter wheat is well suited for Minnesota, winter barley is not (yet). The University of Minnesota’s barley breeding program…

Soil-water basics for irrigation scheduling

By Vasudha Sharma- Extension Irrigation Specialist
During the past few years, irrigated agriculture has increased significantly in Minnesota. Most of the irrigation in the state happens in the glacial outwash region where irrigation makes this region highly productive because of low water holding capacities and rapid drainage, however this is where most people depend on groundwater for their drinking water supply. Contamination of groundwater due to agricultural nitrate leaching and decreased recharge to lakes and streams because of high groundwater withdrawals for irrigation are two critical environmental problems in the central sands region of Minnesota.

Strategic irrigation management can address the complex challenges we face in the central sands region. Irrigation management enables the irrigator to apply the right amount of water at the right time, which increases irrigation efficiency and reduces nitrate-N leaching. However, proper irrigation management is a difficult task. Ov…