C.O.R.N. Newsletter: 2018-01

  1. What accounts for variability in grain protein levels in corn?

    We’ve recently heard comments and questions concerning the varying levels of grain protein levels being found in shelled corn. Some feed companies have reported seeing many samples in the upper 6% and lower 7% protein range this year but there are reports of levels that are nearly 9%. Some feed mill operations are using 7% as the default value based on this year and last year’s levels. However, in the past, higher grain protein levels (% +2) have been cited for corn. Are the reports of low levels in 2016 and 2017 an anomaly? What could be accounting for these varying protein levels in corn?

    Environmental conditions (esp. those affecting soil moisture), cultural practices (nitrogen fertilization, plant population, drainage) and hybrids genetics all influence grain protein. Production factors and favorable growing conditions that increase grain yield usually increase the starch concentration of grain while reducing the grain protein concentration (except when yield increases as a result of N fertilizer application). We generally had favorable growing conditions in 2017 (and much better than expected yields); however, some areas experienced excessive rainfall in May and July, and other areas were dry in Aug and Sept. and variable soil moisture may have contributed to the varying grain N%.

    Soil moisture is a major factor influencing grain protein concentration. Generally, grain protein concentrations are highest in dry years and lowest in years with excess soil moisture. Data from past Ohio Corn Performance Tests indicate that % grain protein (reported as % dry matter or DM, equivalent to 0% grain moisture) may vary by as much as 2 to 3 % points in the same hybrid depending on the growing season (w/drought 10-11% DM, w/good rainfall 8-9% DM). Excessive soil moisture (like that associated with many fields in 2017) can result in loss of soil N through either leaching or denitrification and result in N deficiency – leading to lower grain protein. Moisture stress (drought) can limit a corn plant’s ability to produce dry matter (including starch) and “dilute” the N or protein in the grain tissue. As a result, grain protein concentration in drought stressed corn can often be higher than normal.

    Table 1 shows the grain protein levels and grain yields from OSU field trials from 2012-2014 with normal (May) and late (June) planting dates. It seems in a really good year (2013 May planting), protein levels were right at 9.2% DM. However, in a good year that turned dry (June 2013 and all of 2014), protein levels were lower (8.75% DM). In the drought year (2012), protein levels were up (10-10.9%) but yield was down. Again, all of these are on DM basis. Grain protein levels were reduced slightly by the later June planting dates.

    If reported at 15.5% moisture basis (Table 2), the same data set as shown in Table 1 drops in protein level dramatically (down 1.3-1.5% closer to the 7% value). This may explain some of the varying protein levels we are hearing about. It may be there is a discrepancy at what moisture protein is being tested/reported at (rather than a major change in values). It’s important to be able to compare grain lots with different protein and moisture levels.

    For example, say you want to determine which grain lot below has a higher grain protein:

    • Lot 1: 7.3% grain protein at 18.0% grain moisture
    • Lot 2: 8.1% grain protein at 9.0% grain moisture

     

    If we convert the grain protein levels of the two lots to a 0% grain moisture or on a dry matter basis (DM) we can make a comparison –

    • Lot 1: (7.3/(100-18.0)) x 100 = 8.9% DM protein
    • Lot 2: (8.1/(100-9.0)) x 100 = 8.9% DM protein.

     

    Converting these two lots to DM basis shows they have the same level of protein, even though their raw values are almost 1% different.

     

    Nitrogen management practices that minimize N losses and N deficiencies help to optimize protein concentrations. Grain N concentration will respond to N fertilizer application up to a point, but beyond that, increases in N application often have little effect on grain protein concentration. Past Penn State work suggests that the optimum N application rate for corn protein is similar to that required for optimum grain yield. Differences in protein content are present among hybrids. Grain protein levels typically vary by about 1.5 percentage points in corn hybrid trials. (Some specialty corns developed for enhanced nutritional content may exhibit protein levels greater that our commodity grain hybrids.) Usually the variability in corn grain protein is greater from year to year (environmental effects) than it is within a performance trial (genetic effects). Of course, within a performance test (with hybrids in close proximity and pollen drift), we have the “xenia” effect to deal with. The hybrids we plant today require high populations to optimize yields and this has has resulted in grain with a higher starch content and lower protein content.

     

     

    Table 1: Percent Protein (reported on a 0% grain moisture basis or dry matter basis) at three OSU research farms.

     
       

    Northwest ARS

    Western ARS

    OARDC, Wooster (West Badger)

    Year

    Plant date

    % Protein

    **Yield (bu/a)

    % Protein

    Yield (bu/a)

    % Protein

    Yield (bu/a)

    Average Protein

    2012

    May

    11.8

    142

    10.1

    217

    10.8

    186

    10.9

     
     

    June

    10.0

    177

    9.7

    184

    10.4

    191

    10.0

     

    2013

    May

    9.5

    215

    8.7

    234

    9.4

    242

    9.2

     
     

    June

    9.1

    203

    8.4

    186

    8.8

    189

    8.8

     

    2014

    May

    8.0

    183

    9.1

    204

    9.1

    225

    8.7

     
     

    June

    8.9

    161

    8.9

    178

    8.5

    154

    8.8

     

    **Reported yield is adjusted to 15.5% moisture

     

    Overall Average:

    9.4

     
                       
                       

    Table 2: Percent Protein (reported on a 15.5% grain moisture basis) at three OSU research farms.

         
       

    Northwest ARS

    Western ARS

    OARDC, Wooster (West Badger)

    Year

    Plant date

    % Protein

    **Yield (bu/a)

    % Protein

    Yield (bu/a)

    % Protein

    Yield (bu/a)

    Average Protein

    2012

    May

    10.0

    142

    8.5

    217

    9.1

    186

    9.2

     
     

    June

    8.5

    177

    8.2

    184

    8.8

    191

    8.5

     

    2013

    May

    8.0

    215

    7.4

    234

    7.9

    242

    7.8

     
     

    June

    7.7

    203

    7.1

    186

    7.4

    189

    7.4

     

    2014

    May

    6.8

    183

    7.7

    204

    7.7

    225

    7.4

     
     

    June

    7.5

    161

    7.5

    178

    7.2

    154

    7.4

     

    **Reported yield is adjusted to 15.5% moisture

     

    Overall Average:

    7.9

     
  2. 2017 Northwest Ohio Corn Silage Test

    In 2017, 50 corn silage hybrids representing 15 commercial brands were evaluated in a joint trial with Michigan State University (MSU). One Ohio location is combined with Michigan's two southern (Zone 1) silage locations. The trials were divided into two maturity groups designated early and late on the basis of the relative maturity (RM) submitted by the companies with results listed in separate tables. The Ohio test site was located in our Northwest Region at Hoytville (Wood County). The two MSU sites were located in Branch and Lenawee counties, which are on the Ohio/Michigan state line. The test results from the three 2017 locations are treated as one region. The plots were planted with 4-row air type planters and maintained by each respective state utilizing standard production practices. The center two rows were harvested using MSU’s New Holland T6.175 tractor which powered a two-row Champion C1200 Kemper forage harvester with a rear mounted Haldrup M-63 Weigh system.

    Silage tests were harvested uniformly as close to half milk line as possible. Near- Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) analysis was performed by MSU using their current procedures. Silage results present the percent dry matter of each hybrid plus green weight and dry weight as tons per acre. Other data presented include percent stand, the percentage of in vitro digestible dry matter, acid detergent fiber, neutral detergent fiber, neutral detergent fiber digestibility, crude protein and starch. Milk production in pounds per ton and pounds per acre were estimated using MILK2006 (UW-Madison Dairy Science Department).

    A complete summary of the Ohio results are available online at: http://www.oardc.ohio-state.edu/silagetrials. More information on procedures and additional 2017 MSU silage test data can be viewed online at: http://www.varietytrials.msu.edu/corn. For more information on Ohio State crop variety testing, visit: http://u.osu.edu/perf.

  3. Agronomic Crops and YouTube

    We know not everyone can attend our meetings so for many topics we produce videos or publish bulletins. Some are short and on the concerns of the day, others are for background on broader topics. The OSU Agronomic Crops Team has a Youtube channel where we place the videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbqpb60QXN3UJIBa5is6kHw.

    One recent addition is from Ryan Haden and Jon Witter on setting up grid soil sampling and then developing a variable rate application map. It can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/kCitqkkRV6Y. This is nicely done, short at 15 minutes, and involves ATI students on our Wooster campus.

    Team members post videos as well as the ones we have on our YouTube Channel.

    While you are in the neighborhood of the AgCrops videos you can also check out our publications page: https://agcrops.osu.edu/publications

    • One item of current interest is the FACT training manual - https://agcrops.osu.edu/publications/fact-manual-2017
      • There are two ways to become certified to apply fertilizer going forward. 1) attend on OSU 3-hour certification program, or 2) take the Fertilizer Applicator exam at the Ohio Department of Agriculture – it should be available by about February 1st I hear. The FACT manual is the training publication for that exam.
    • Also on this website is the 1995 Tri-State Fertilizer Recommendations publication. After four years of field work (2014-2017) to update this publication, looks like future recommendations will be fairly similar. For now this is still a good publication for phosphorus and potassium recommendations for corn, soybeans, wheat and alfalfa.

    The new Ohio Agronomy Guide came out late last spring, here is a link to purchase: https://agcrops.osu.edu/publications/ohio-agronomy-guide-15th-edition-bulletin-472, or visit your local Extension office to pick one up.

  4. THE EFFECTS OF SOIL CONSERVATION PRACTICES ON SELECTED SOIL HEALTH INDICATORS

    Author(s):
    ABSTRACT
    Soil health is defined as the continued capacity of soil to function as a vital living ecosystem that sustains plants, animals, and humans. Soil health indicators are measurements of the physical, chemical, and biological properties of the soil. As more tools become available to measure soil health factors, it is critical that we evaluate the efficacy of these tools. This 2-year project in Northwest Ohio measured the impact that soil conservation practices have on selected soil health indicators and the subsequent corn yield in cover cropped hay, wheat and corn cropping systems. Soil respiration was measured by the Solvita™ field test and the laboratory burst test for carbon dioxide release. Soil nitrogen as nitrate and ammonium were measured. Carbon dioxide emissions were greatest on the fescue sod field border (148 pounds per acre carbon dioxide), yet had the lowest soil nitrate (1 ppm).
     
    INTRODUCTION
    Soil health is defined as the continued capacity of soil to function as a vital living ecosystem that sustains plants, animals, and humans (USDA NRCS). Soil health indicators are measurements of the physical, chemical, and biological properties of the soil. Soil health measurements can be used to better understand the capability of soil to provide essential nutrients for growing crops. As the soil is managed with conservation practices, such as cover crops or reduced tillage, the soil health changes that these practices create in the soil can be measured and compared (Clark, 2007). The results may then be used to assist with making soil management decisions. Crop yield is the final comparison which measures the impact of soil management on crop productivity. The benefits of
    cover crop mixtures can result in improved cover crop growth and subsequent grain yields. Multi-year soil health improvement measurements that quantify long-term benefits of soil conservation practices are needed. Soil respiration is the primary measure of carbon dioxide released by microorganisms in the soil (Solvita, n.d.). As the activity and number of soil microbes increase, carbon dioxide release from the soil increases (Sciarappa et al., 2015). The increased biological activity of these soil microbes is an indicator of a healthy soil (Sciarappa et al, 2015). Soil conservation practices such as cover crops and reduced tillage can favorably improve soil health by increasing the number of soil organisms that break down organic matter, and in the process, release plant nutrients. Solvita™ is a biological respiration test using a patented gel-technology system to measure carbon dioxide (Ward laboratories, Inc., n.d.). Results of Solvita™ measurements are a general indicator of soil health given in carbon dioxide emissions per surface acre basis. In addition to measuring microbial activity with respiration, nutrient availability should also be measured for an understanding of crop growth and yield. The Solvita™ test needs to be used in conjunction with soil nitrate and ammonium tests to determine soil health and productivity. This study focuses on soil respiration, nitrate, ammonium, and crop yield as soil health indicators. The goal of this project is to compare predicted soil health ratings with measured crop yield. Many more measurements are becoming available to test soil health as standards are being determined. Other potential soil health indicators include infiltration, bulk density, active carbon, microbial biomass, and aggregate stability.
     
    METHODS
    This two year project occurred in 2014 and 2015 at the Ohio Agriculture Research and Development Center Northwest Agriculture Research Station located near Custar, Ohio. The field was planted to soybeans in 2013. Treatments are shown in Table 1, and consisted of cover crops no-till planted in 2014 (Treatments #1, 3, and 6), conservation tillage (Treatment #2), and no tillage/no cover (Treatment #5). Samples were also collected from the sod bordering the field (Treatment #4). All treatments except for the sod border were replicated four times in a randomized complete block design. Plot size was 10 x 80 feet. Herbicides were applied on April 17, 2015 to kill existing cover crop growth. Pioneer 0496AMX corn was seeded on all treatment plots except sod border on May 8, 2015 by a no-till seeder, with all plots receiving the same tillage, fertilizer and corn seeding rate (32,000 seeds/acre). Side-dressed nitrogen (28% UAN) was applied at a rate of 66 gallons per acre on June 23 during the V6 corn stage. Corn was harvested on October 16. Harvest data was collected from the center two rows in each plot.
     
    Table 1. Conservation practices applied to field trial in 2014.
     
     
    Treatment #1 (Multi) consisted of a mix of the following cover crop species: winter pea, cow pea, sun hemp, oats, pearl millet, radish, ethiopian cabbage, and sunflower. Red clover (Treatment #6) was broadcast-seeded into growing wheat on April 24, 2014. Red clover continued to grow after wheat harvest in July and was terminated by herbicide application the following spring when corn was planted. The Multi (treatment #1) and Winter Pea (treatment #3) cover crops were drill planted with no tillage into wheat residue on August 13 (Sundermeier, 2015). Soil respiration samples for the Solvita™ tests were collected by using a core sampler to minimize the disturbance of the soil core. Soil respiration samples were single measurements, collected from one replicate plot per treatment, taken on May 8, May 20, and June 8, 2015.
     
     
    Figure 1. Collecting core samples for soil respiration test. Photo courtesy of Solvita (www.solvita.com).
     
     
    The soil respiration Solvita™ test was conducted by two different methods, the Solvita™ field test and the laboratory burst test. The field test can be done on site with fresh, moist, and undisturbed soil. The collected soil is directly transferred from the field to the sample jar and incubated 24 hours at room temperature. A paddle with the gel-technology system reacts with carbon dioxide released from the soil in the jar and changes color. Paddle color change correlates with respiration activity and can be visually measured or precisely recorded with a digital color reader (Figures 2 and 3). To convert the field test color index reading into CO2 respiration values, the Basic Solvita™ Field Test CO2 Calculator was used (https://solvita.com/soil/basal-co2-guide/). Values are adjusted to soil temperature at the time of sampling. Respiration rates are reported in pounds per acre CO2 (Ward Laboratories, Inc, n.d.).
     
    Figure 2. Jars and Gel Paddles for Solvita test. Photo courtesy of Solvita (www.solvita.com).
     
     
    Figure 3. Digital Color Reader. Photo courtesy of Solvita (www.solvita.com)
     
    The Solvita™ carbon dioxide burst test was conducted at a certified laboratory (Ward Laboratory, Nebraska). Carbon dioxide burst tests were single measurements, collected from one replicate plot per treatment, on June 18. When shipping samples, care was taken to avoid excess heating or collapse of the soil sample in order to prevent the sample from respiring during shipment. Therefore, soil samples were shipped with a container of dry ice and cushioned in the shipping box. Once received at the laboratory, samples were dried and remoistened with a specific amount of water, which causes a “burst” release of carbon dioxide. Measurements were taken with the same method as the field test. Soil nitrate and ammonium samples were collected from 0-12 inch deep soil probes and sent to A & L labs in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Samples were collected at the same location and dates as the field respiration tests: single measurements, collected from one replicate plot per treatment, taken on May 8, May 20, and June 8, 2015. Ammonium analysis was conducted from the same samples submitted for nitrate analysis. Measurement of profitability as corn grain yield was analyzed from randomized, replicated treatments.
     
    RESULTS
    The field test for carbon dioxide showed variability among treatments both within the same sample date and variability between different sample dates (Figure 4). Sod treatment had 148 pounds per acre CO2 measured on May 6 with the field test. This compared to 14 pounds per acre CO2 for the no cover treatment on the same date. The May 18 sample date had red clover with the highest CO2 measurement at 148 pounds per acre CO2. However, multi-species cover crop (23 pounds per acre CO2) had the lowest measurement on that date. The June 3 sample date had lower values measured in the cover crop and sod treatments compared to the May sample dates.
     
    Figure 4. Carbon dioxide measurements from Solvita field tests on three dates, expressed as lbs CO2/acre.
     
     
    The burst test on June 18 (Figure 5) showed similar CO2 values for cover crop treatments, with multi-species (131 lbs/acre), winter pea (120 lbs/acre), and red clover (125 lbs/acre). The highest value (143 lbs/acre) was measured in the tillage treatment.
     
    Figure 5. Carbon dioxide measurements from Solvita burst tests from June 18, expressed as lbs CO2/acre. Comparison between the field and burst test showed much higher values for the burst test. The field test on June 3 had the same value (73 lbs CO2/acre ) for multi-species, winter pea, and red clover treatments. This was 47 – 58 pounds per acre less than the burst test for the same treatments. The June 8 sample date (Table 2) showed the highest nitrogen measurements (both nitrate and ammonium) among all treatments except sod. On June 8, red clover measured 18 ppm nitrate compared to 1 ppm for sod. Across all sample dates and treatments, red clover measured consistently high nitrate and ammonium levels. Tillage treatment was comparable to multi-species and winter pea for nitrate and ammonium on the June 8 sample date.
     
    Table 2. Soil Ammonium and Nitrate Analysis. Soil ammonium and nitrate measurements (ppm) tests on three dates.
     
    Corn yield results were not significantly different among all treatments (Table 3). Red clover was well established in August when the remaining cover crops were planted. This indicates red clover may have an advantage (Sundermeier, 2010) by adding more biomass and deeper rooting structure that improved corn yield the following year.
     
    Table 3. Corn yield by treatment, bu/acre.
     
    Field respiration from sod treatments were the highest value collected on the May 6 sampling date (Figure 4). However, soil nitrate and ammonium values from the same sampling time were the lowest for the sod treatment (Table 2). Conservation tillage showed the highest respiration level from the Solvita™ burst test (Figure 5) and similar soil nitrogen levels compared to cover crop  treatments (Table 2).
     
     
    DISCUSSION
    Crop production requires adequate soil nitrogen; therefore a false conclusion may be made from only measuring carbon dioxide as a soil health indicator. In this study, one might conclude that sod was the most productive soil according to the field respiration test. However, soil nitrogen levels were the lowest in the sod treatment. This would result in poor crop performance. Soil health reports are needed that include nutrient levels, especially soil nitrogen. Soil conservation practices such as reduced tillage and cover crops have the ability to improve soil productivity. If farmers can measure these soil health improvements and the measurements correlate to crop production increases, then soil conservation will be practiced. The effect of soil moisture and temperature on soil nitrate, ammonium, and carbon dioxide can determine the accuracy of prediction for nitrogen availability (Clark, 2007). A soil health test conducted by V6 growth stage would be useful in corn production to allow farmers to adjust the amount of additional nitrogen to apply according to the soil health test prediction. In this study, the results of the field test (Figure 4) compared to the burst test (Figure 5) for carbon dioxide have different values. When choosing which test to conduct, factors such as time, cost, and training need to be considered. The field test results are completed within 24 hours while the burst test must be sent to a commercial laboratory for testing which may take 10 days or more for results. The field test cost per sample is approximately $40 less than the burst test however the digital color reader (Figure 3) will increase one time costs for field testing by up to $900 (www.solvita.com). Accuracy of results is dependent on proper sample collection and testing for both methods. Carbon dioxide measurements must relate to useful information as a potential indicator for soil health. The field test carbon dioxide trended lower values on June 3 compared to May 6. These trends are not the same as reported by Sciarappa et al. (2015) with annual crops having low early spring carbon dioxide readings then increasing during the cropping season. However, measurements from sod in this study correspond well to the perennial treatments in Sciarappa et al.'s study, with high carbon dioxide levels early in season, then dropping later. A one-time measurement of soil indicators may lead to false conclusions. Multi-seasonal, multi-year and replicated measurements are needed to accurately measure soil biological activity under various soil temperature and moisture conditions. In the future, this study would benefit from multi-year measurements which would allow time for cover crops to provide improved soil health benefits as compared to a short-term biological burst from soil tillage. More research is needed to establish a regional soil health test package that measures the chemical, biological, and physical characteristics of the soil and can accurately predict crop production potential.
     
     
    LITERATURE CITED
    Clark, A., ed. (2007). Managing Cover Crops Profitably, 3rd Ed. Sustainable Agriculture Network, Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program,
    United States Department of Agriculture, Handbook Series Book 9.
    Sciarappa,W., Quinn,V., Murphy,S., Barresi, R. (2015). Surveying Soil Health With The Solvita CO2 Respiration Test. Journal of the National Association of
    County Agricultural Agents, 8 (2).
    Solvita, (n.d.). Solvita CO2 Respiration Test, www.solvita.com
    Sundermeier, A. P. (2015).The Effect of Summer Seeded Cover Crops on Corn, Agronomic Crops Network.
    Sundermeier, A.P. (2010). Nutrient Management with Cover Crops, Journal of the National Association of County Agricultural Agents, 3(1).
    Ward laboratories, Inc., (n.d.). Solvita Soil Test Information, www.wardlab.com/solvita
    USDA NRCS (n.d.). Soil Health. Retrieved from: https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/soils/health/
    The burst test on June 18 (Figure 5) showed similar CO2 values for cover crop treatments, with multi-species (131 lbs/acre), winter pea (120 lbs/acre), and red
    clover (125 lbs/acre). The highest value (143 lbs/acre) was measured in the tillage treatment.
  5. Fertilizer Recertification Begins in 2018

    Ohio is now seeing full implementation of Ohio’s Agricultural Fertilizer Applicator Certification regulation. The regulation was result of Senate Bill 150, which can be found at http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/905.322 and http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/905.321. The 2014 regulation required farmers to complete a fertilizer certification program if they applied fertilizer to more than 50 acres of land in agricultural production primarily for sale. Exemptions included fertilizer applied through a planter, individuals whose crops remained on the farm for their livestock and not sold, or fertilizer applied by a commercial applicator.

    Manure was not part of the regulation since it was specifically addressed by other regulations. However, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) later clarified that if a farmer purchased composted manure, such as poultry, and then applied it themselves; it would be considered a fertilizer and they would have to complete the certification program.

    Farmers were given three years to complete the certification training. Training included a two-hour program if they already had a Private Pesticide Applicator License, otherwise, they had to complete a three-hour program. Key components of the training were to know the potential causes for algal blooms and management practices to reduce phosphorus losses from farm fields. Training was provided primarily by County Extension Agriculture & Natural Resources Educators of the Ohio State University.

    In three years, 17,493 Ohioans completed the Fertilizer Certification program. The three-year window to complete the initial certification program ended September 30, 2017. Any farmer applying fertilizer that has more than 50 acres of cropland without an Agricultural Fertilizer Applicator certificate after September can be fined and/or charged with a misdemeanor offense. Farmers that still need certification have two options: complete a three-hour training program or pass a state test.

    The ODA has also made other changes to the Fertilizer Certification program starting October 1:

    • Those renewing their fertilizer certificate, which must be done every three years, must either pass a fertilizer exam or take a one-hour class.
    • Two new items were added to the required records that certified fertilizer applicators must keep: Now they must record the number of acres where they applied fertilizer and the total amount of fertilizer applied.
    • Only one person at a farm or business needs to be certified to apply fertilizer. A family member or employee of the certificate holder can apply fertilizer under their direct supervision, meaning the certificate holder has instructed that person where, when and how to apply fertilizer, and is no farther than 25 miles away or within two hours travel of the applicator working under their direct supervision. The rule change clarified that provision.
    • Certificate holders who do not also hold a license to apply pesticides will see their fertilizer certificate period change to April 1 to March 31. Previously, it was June 1 to May 31. The new cycle is aimed at ensuring that certifications will generally be in place prior to the planting season.
    • A grace period of 180 days is offered to certificate holders who o not send in their application and payment prior to the date their certificate expires. However, in renewing their certificate, the applicant has to have completed the required training or test before March 31.

     

    The Fertilizer Certification program was a result of a broader initiative developed by a 2012 state task force consisting of several Ohio agencies involved with agricultural, environmental, and natural resources issues. The task force developed recommendations to improve Ohio’s waterways while maintaining the integrity of the agricultural industry. The Fertilizer Certification program is one way that the agricultural community is assuring the public that farmers know the best management practices when applying fertilizer. More information on the Agriculture Fertilizer Applicator Certification program may be found at https://nutrienteducation.osu.edu/

  6. 2018 Agronomic crops Outlook Meetings

    Author(s): Chris Bruynis

    Ohio State University Extension is pleased to announce the 2018 Agricultural Outlook Meetings! In 2018 there will be seven locations in Ohio. Each location will have speaker addressing the topics of Free Trade Agreements: Why They Matter to US Agriculture, Grain Market Outlook, and Examining the 2018 Ohio Farm Economy. Additional topics vary by location and include 2018 Farm Bill Policy Update, Dairy Production Economics Update, and Farm Tax Update.

    A meal is provided with each meeting and included in the registration price. Questions can be directed to the local host contact.

    The outlook meeting are scheduled for the following dates and locations:

    Date: January 22, 2018

    Time: 7:30 am – 10:30 am

    Speakers: Barry Ward, Matt Roberts, Ian Sheldon

    Location: Emmett Chapel, 318 Tarlton Rd, Circleville, OH 43113

    Cost: $10.00

    RSVP: Call OSU Extension Pickaway County 740-474-7534

    By: January 15th

    More information can be found at: http://pickaway.osu.edu

     

    Date: January 22, 2018

    Time: 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

    Speakers: Barry Ward, Matt Roberts, Ian Sheldon

    Location: The Loft at Pickwick Place, 1875 N Sandusky Ave., Bucyrus OH 44820

    Cost: $15.00

    RSVP: Call OSU Extension, Crawford County 419-562-8731 or email hartschuh.11@osu.edu

    By: January 15th

    More information can be found at: http://crawford.osu.edu

     

    Date: January 26, 2018

    Time: 8:00 am – noon

    Speakers: Barry Ward, Matt Roberts, Ian Sheldon

    Location: Der Dutchman, Plain City

    Cost: $15.00

    RSVP: Call OSU Extension, Union County 937-644-8117

    By: January 19th

    More information can be found at: http://union.osu.edu

     

    Date: January 29, 2018

    Time: 9:00 am – 12:00 noon

    Speakers: Mike Gastier, Matt Roberts, Ian Sheldon

    Location: St Mary’s Hall 46 East Main St. Wakeman, OH 44889

    Cost: No Charge; $20.00 if past deadline

    RSVP: Call OSU Extension, Huron County 419-668-8219

    By: January 22nd

    More information can be found at: http://huron.osu.edu

     

    Date: January 29, 2018

    Time: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

    Speakers: Barry Ward, Jim Byrne, Ian Sheldon

    Location: Jewell Community Center,

    Cost: $10:00 (after deadline $20.00)

    RSVP: OSU Extension, Defiance County 419-782-4771 or online at http://defiance.osu.edu

    By: January 22nd

    More information can be found at: http://defiance.osu.edu

     

    Date: January 31, 2018

    Time: 9:30 am – 3:30 pm

    Speakers: Ian Sheldon, Jim Byrne, Ben Brown, Barry Ward, Dianne Shoemaker, David Marrison

    Location: Fisher Auditorium

    Cost: $15.00

    RSVP: Call OSU Extension, Wayne County 330-264-8722

    By: January 24th

    More information can be found at: http://wayne.osu.edu

     

    Date: March 23, 2018

    Time: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

    Speakers: Barry Ward, Matt Roberts, Chris Bruynis

    Location: Chamber Ag Day / Ag Outlook meeting, Darke County

    Registration Flyer: http://go.osu.edu/2018darkeagoutlook

    Cost: $20

    RSVP: Darke County Extension office at 937-548-5215

    By: March 16th

    More information can be found at: http://darke.osu.edu

  7. Customizing your Weed Management Program

    Two similar advanced weed management program are planned for February 13th  in Marion and 14th in Willard. They will both feature Mark Loux and Bruce Ackley with hands on weed identification. They will also be covering weed biology and making a cost effective weed control program that fits your farm. These will be hands on programs working with green house grown weeds, for weed identifiaction at various growth stages. The Willard Program will have an hour after lunch focusing on sprayer clean out and effects of spray nozzles. The Willard program will also offer pesticde recertification credits and CCA credits. Please call the respective program sponsors on the fliers below for more information and to registure by Wednessday this week. 

     

  8. Northern Ohio Crops Day

    Author(s): Allen Gahler

    The annual Northern Ohio Crops Day, held annually in February at Ole Zim’s Wagon Shed near Gibsonburg, Ohio in Sandusky County is returning to its roots in 2018 with an in-depth agronomy program.

    Progressive producers will want to mark February 8, 2018 at 8:30 a.m. on their calendar for a program packed full of speakers and topics on the latest issues in agronomy, including a budgeting and cropland values update by Barry Ward, pigweed ID and control strategies by Dr. Mark Loux, and a discussion on weather trends and their impact by OSU Extension climatologist Aaron Wilson.

    Additional topics will include soybean disease management by Anne Dorrance, soil fertility, nitrogen use in on-farm research trials, and getting the most out of Precision Ag technology. For complete agenda and details visit www.sandusky.osu.edu

    There is a $20 registration fee for the program, and pre-registration is required by calling the Sandusky County Extension office at 419-334-6340 or by emailing Allen Gahler at gahler.2@osu.edu. CCA credits will be available, but there will be no pesticide or fertilizer certification credits offered this year. Registration is open at 8:00 a.m. with morning refreshments and time to visit with local sponsors, and the program beginning at 8:30. Lunch will be served by the Ole Zims staff. Sponsors include several local ag businesses, and plenty of time will be available for participants to visit their display tables.

  9. Tax Webinar for Farmers and Farmland Owners

    Author(s): Barry Ward

    Are you getting the most from your tax return? Farmers and farmland owners that wish to increase their tax knowledge should consider this webinar that will address tax issues important to them. Mark your calendars for January 29th, 2018 to participate in this 2 hour webinar from 10 am to noon.

    The webinar, which focuses on tax issues specific to farmers and farmland owners will offer insight into topics such as new and proposed tax legislation as well as buying and selling farmland.

    OSU Income Tax Schools which are a part of OSU Extension and the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences will offer this webinar on January 29th from 10-noon.

    The two-hour program, which will be presented in a live webinar format, is targeted towards farmers and farmland owners who file their own farm taxes or simply wish to arm themselves with more tax information that will help them to better plan for tax filing.

    Topics to be discussed during the webinar include:

    • New and Proposed Tax Legislation
    • Ag Income and Expenses
    • Net Operating Losses
    • Buying and Selling Farmland
    • Rental Property
    • Demolition of Structures

    The cost for the webinar is $35. To register for this live webinar, go to https://farmoffice.osu.edu/osu-income-tax-schools/2017-farmerlandowner-income-tax-issues-webinar

    The OSU Income Tax School Program is a part of OSU Extension and the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University.

  10. Wyandot Agronomy Day January 25th – Sycamore

    Wyandot Agronomy day will be January 25th at the Sycamore Community Center. The program will start at 9:30am and run until 4pm. We will be covering many topics including Corn and it’s potential, weeds and your herbicide program, maximizing precision ag and nutrients, and Soil Carbon and microbes. The program will be a mix of state specialist on local county educators. We will have pesticide and fertilizer recertification credits and CCA credit. For more information all OSU Extension Office Crawford County 419-562-8731.

  11. 2018 Central Ohio Agronomy School “The Nuts & Bolts About Corn & Soybean Production”

    Author(s): John Barker

    The 2018 Central Ohio Agronomy School will be held on Monday evenings, beginning on Monday February 5 through Monday March 5, from 6:30 –9:00 p.m. in the conference room of the Ag Services Building, 1025 Harcourt Rd. Mt. Vernon, Ohio 43050. This five-week program will provide the attendees with the most comprehensive, up-to-date crop production and agricultural technology information available today. This school is designed with everyone in mind; part-time or full-time producer, beginner or CCA agronomist. Within each subject area we will teach the basic concepts and progress to the most advanced agronomic principles.

    Topics include:

    February 5Dr. Robert Mullen, Agrium-Potash Corp.

    Fertilizer Outlook for 2018

    The Phosphorus Situation in Ohio

    Sulfur – Fact or Fiction

    February 12Frank Gibbs, USDA NRCS Soil Scientist (Retired)

    Building Soil Health - What are the Benefits?

    Aaron Wilson, Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center

    Ohio Changing Weather Patterns.

    2018 Weather Outlook.

    February 19Matt Bennett, Precision Planting

    Farming by the Foot, not the Field

    Mike Hannewald, Beck’s

    Multi Hybrid Planting

    February 26 - Dr. Mark Loux, OSU Extension

    Weed control update for 2016

    Palmer Amaranth – We Have It, How Do We Control It?

    Palmer, Waterhemp and Pigweed Identification With Real Plants

    March 5Peggy Hall, OSU Agricultural Law

    Legal Issues Facing Agriculture

    Barry Ward, OSU Extension

    Farm Economics Outlook for 2018

    March 12 - Weather Make Up Date

     

    This school will provide:

    12.5 continuing education credits (CEU’s) for Certified Crop Advisors,

    N.M. 2.0, P.D. 2.5, P.M. 4.0, C.M. 3.0, S&W 1.0.

    4.5 hours of Commercial Pesticide Credits

    Core– 1.5 Hours, 2C – 2.5 Hours, 2A –.5 Hours.

    4.5 hours of Private Pesticide Recertification Credits

    Core - 1.5 Hours, Category 1- 2.0 Hours, Category 2 - .5 Hours 2, Category 6 - .5 Hours

    Registration costs vary due to CUE credits and pesticide applicator credits.

    This program is sponsored by The Ohio State University Extension, Advantage Ag & Equipment, AgInfoTech, B&B Farm Service, Beck’s, Central Ohio Farmers CO-OP, Channel, Cubbage Electric, Farmcredit, First-Knox National Bank, Ohio Soybean Council and Seed Consultants.

    For more information contact the OSU Extension Office in Knox County (740-397-0401). The following links will provide more information for this program. http://u.osu.edu/knoxcountyag/ or https://knox.osu.edu/

  12. 2018 SW Ohio Corn College

    Author(s): Tony Nye

    Monday, January 22, 2018 from 9:00 Am to 3:30 PM, at the Clinton County Extension Community room. 111 S. Nelson Avenue, Wilmington, Ohio 45177

    This High impact program is designed for producers wanting to be on the “Cutting Edge” of corn production for their operations.

    Topics include:

    • Agronomic Practices that Optimize Profitability in Corn Production-Perception vs. Reality

    • Population and Hybrid Characteristics

    • Ear and Kernel Disorders

    • Fertility Management – A look at Nitrogen, Timing and Needs During Corn Development

    • Decision making with High Resolution Crop Imagery

    • Corn Disease and Fungicide Use – what new threats are there and what are the best

    • Real Field Experiences with Variable Rate Nitrogen Applications

     

    CCA Credits will be available!

    Speakers:

    Dr. Peter Thomison, Ohio State University

    Dr. John Fulton, Ohio State University

    Dr. Josh McGrath, University of Kentucky

    Pierce Paul, Ohio State University

    Elizabeth Hawkins, Ohio State University

     

    Registration is $40 per person and will include refreshments, lunch, and handouts. Registration is Due January 18, Payment options are credit card, check or cash. Registration and payment by credit card may made at the Extension Office. Make checks payable to OSU Extension – Corn and mail to: OSU Extension Clinton County, 111 S. Nelson Ave., Suite 2, Wilmington, Ohio 45177. Registration is also available at the following link: http://go.osu.edu/2018SWCORN.

     

    For more information on either program contact Tony Nye at (937) 382 – 0901 or by email at nye.1@osu.edu.

  13. Northern Ohio Hay Production Day

    Author(s): Allen Gahler

    Hay and forage producers across Northern Ohio will have an opportunity to brush up their knowledge and skills on alfalfa production, learn about alternative forages, and discuss hay marketing strategies on January 30 at the OARDC North Central Ag Research Station near Fremont.

    Topics to be covered include Alfalfa stand establishment, fertility/foliar fertilizers, alfalfa varieties, cutting management, weed and pest management, forage quality and marketing, and the use of cover crops and annuals for double cropping forages.

    The program is sponsored by OSU Extension Sandusky County, and presenters will include Allen Gahler, OSU Extension Sandusky County, Jason Hartschuh, OSU Extension Crawford County, and Rory Lewandowski, OSU Extension Wayne County.

    The program will run from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. and the station is located at 1165 County Rd. 43, Fremont, OH. Cost: $20 per person, and please RSVP to Sandusky County Extension by January 25. To RSVP or for more information, call 419-334-6340 or email Gahler.2@osu.edu. Lunch, refreshments, and publications will be provided.

     

  14. Input Wanted- Ohio Farm Custom Rate Survey – 2018

    Author(s): Barry Ward

    Ohio Farm Custom Work Provider/Client,

    We need your assistance in securing up-to-date information about farm custom work rates and machinery rental rates in Ohio. This information is updated every-other year and published by OSU Extension. It is widely used across the state, so we need the best information available. Enclosed is a copy of the Ohio Farm Custom Rate Survey for 2018. Please provide rates that are current including the latest price increases or planned increases.

    An online option for this survey is available at: OhioFarmCustomRatesSurvey2018

    or: https://osu.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cJa90YBYdWOa6DX

    We would ask you to please respond even if you know only have a few operations with data. We want information on actual rates, either what you paid to hire work or what you charged to perform custom work.

    Deadline for Surveys to be returned: March 31st, 2018

    Further instructions on select sections:

    Silage Harvest (Pg.2, Middle of 1st Column) Please circle what type of storage that is used:

    1.Upright, 2.Bunker or 3.Silage Bag.

    Baling – Large Bale or Stack (Page 2, 2nd Column) Please circle what type of bale or stack you are completing the section for. 1. Large Round Bale – Approx. #1500, 2. Large Round Bale – Approx. #600-1000, 3. Large Square Bale, 4. Stack

    Drainage Installation (Page 3, Top of 1st Column) Please circle what type of Installation Method is being used: 1. Ditching Machine, 2. Drainage Plow.

  15. Coshocton/Muskingum Agronomy School

    The 2018 Agronomy School for Coshocton and Muskingum Counties will be on Wednesday, January 31, 2018 at Dresden United Methodist Church, 1014 Main St, Dresden, OH 43821. Topics will include disease and pest management, managing harvest data, nutrient management and water quality, and industry outlooks. Certified Crop Advisor continuing education credits are available and participants will be provided with a copy of the new Ohio Agronomy Guide, 15th edition. Registration and light refreshments begin at 9:00 am with introductions at 9:15 am.

    The registration flier is available at go.osu.edu/agschoolflier.

    Cost: $30 per person. Payment may be received by check through the mail and should be sent to the Muskingum County Extension Office, 225 Underwood Street, Zanesville, OH 43701. Make checks payable to Ohio State University Muskingum County.

    Additionally, payment and registration may be completed online with a credit card at go.osu.edu/2018cmagr.

    The 2018 Coshocton Muskingum Agronomy School is sponsored by the OSU Extension Offices of Coshocton and Muskingum Counties with additional support from the Ohio Soybean Council. Please contact Clifton Martin, ANR Extension Educator Muskingum County, at 740-454-0144 or martin.2422@osu.edu with any questions.

Crop Observation and Recommendation Network

C.O.R.N. Newsletter is a summary of crop observations, related information, and appropriate recommendations for Ohio crop producers and industry. C.O.R.N. Newsletter is produced by the Ohio State University Extension Agronomy Team, state specialists at The Ohio State University and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC). C.O.R.N. Newsletter questions are directed to Extension and OARDC state specialists and associates at Ohio State.

Contributors

Amanda Douridas (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Andy Michel (State Specialist, Entomology)
Bruce Clevenger, CCA (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Clifton Martin, CCA (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Garth Ruff (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Glen Arnold, CCA (Field Specialist, Manure Nutrient Management )
Greg LaBarge, CPAg/CCA (Field Specialist, Agronomic Systems)
Harold Watters, CPAg/CCA (Field Specialist, Agronomic Systems)
Jeff Stachler (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
John Fulton (State Specialist, Precision Agriculture)
Lee Beers, CCA (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Les Ober, CCA (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Mark Badertscher (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Mary Griffith (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Mike Gastier, CCA (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)
Pierce Paul (State Specialist, Corn and Wheat Diseases)
Sam Custer (Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources)

Disclaimer

The information presented here, along with any trade names used, is supplied with the understanding that no discrimination is intended and no endorsement is made by Ohio State University Extension is implied. Although every attempt is made to produce information that is complete, timely, and accurate, the pesticide user bears responsibility of consulting the pesticide label and adhering to those directions.

CFAES provides research and related educational programs to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis. For more information, visit cfaesdiversity.osu.edu. For an accessible format of this publication, visit cfaes.osu.edu/accessibility.