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Corn Newsletter : 2019-22
Another hot week...Author(s): Jim Noel
...Another hot week before a trend toward normal...
This week will be marked by hot and humid conditions with rains later Tuesday into Wednesday from the remnants of Barry. Most places will likely see 0.50-1.00 inches but even with Barry going by the rainfall will be highly variable with some areas getting less than 0.50 inches and others getting over 2.00 inches.
It appears the hottest weather this summer will move through starting Thursday through Sunday with highs in the 90s and lows in the 70s. Heat Index values during the upcoming heatwave will top 100 degrees. You can monitor all NOAA/NWS watches, warnings and advisories at https://www.weather.gov/
Temperatures are forecast to relax closer to normal starting the last full week in July into the first half of August. Temperatures are forecast to relax to slightly above normal from the end of July into the first half of August due to night-time temperatures staying above normal.
You can see the latest 6-10 day, 8-14 day and week 3/4 outlooks from the NOAA/NWS Climate Prediction Center at https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/
July 16-21 - Temperatures = +6 to +10 (much above)
Rainfall = 0.5-1.0 on average (near normal)
Heat Index = 90-100+ (much above)
July 22-28 - Temperatures = 0 to +2 (near normal)
Rainfall = 0.25-0.75 on average (below)
Heat Index = (normal to below normal)
Week 3-4 - (First Half of August)
Temperatures slightly above normal
Rainfall near normal
The 16-day rainfall total is forecast to average 1-2 inches which is normal to slightly drier than normal. Much of the rain in the next two weeks will depend on the remnants of Barry this week.
Use More Caution this Year to Reduce Spray DriftAuthor(s): Erdal Ozkan
Spray drift not only results in wasting expensive pesticides and pollution of the environment, it may damage non-target crops nearby, and poses a serious health risk to people living in areas where drift is occurring. Drift happens! It accounts for about half of all non-compliance cases investigated by the Ohio Department of Agriculture.
As you know, we are experiencing an unusual weather situation in Ohio and several other corn-belt states this year. Wet fields have made planting of corn and soybeans delayed or in many cases forced farmers to abandon it altogether looking for alternatives such as planting cover crops. Either situation presents added caution when applying herbicides in terms of spray drift which is defined as movement of pesticides by wind from the application site to an off-target site during or soon after application is done. When exactly the same types of crops, such as Genetically Modified beans, or non-GMO beans are planted in neighboring fields, herbicide drifting from one field to another may not show injury symptoms. However, drift must be one of your most serious concerns when spraying herbicides in fields where the adjoining fields have been planted with some other crops and cover crops. Even a small amount of drift may create significant damage on such crops under these conditions.
Although complete elimination of spray drift is impossible, problems can be reduced significantly if you are aware of major factors which influence drift, and take precautions to minimize their influence on off-target movement of spray droplets. The factors that play a role in either the creation, or reduction of spray drift are: a) Spray characteristics, such as volatility and viscosity of pesticide formulation; b) Equipment and application techniques used for spraying pesticides; c) Weather conditions at the time of application (wind speed and direction, temperature, relative humidity and stability of air around the application site); and most importantly, d) Operator care, attitude, and skill.
Here are five cost-effective things you can do to minimize spray drift.
- Pay attention to wind speed more than anything else. The risk of spray drift will increase with increases in wind speed. There is no magic wind speed number below which drift will be minimum. There are many other factors mentioned below that influence the wind speed you should stay under. Generally, wind speeds below 5 mph, coupled with other good management practices, will significantly reduce the injury caused by drift. The best investment you can make is to buy a wind meter that tells you how high the wind velocity is at any given time. Having a wind meter handy will help you avoid a costly problem associated with spray drift.
- Pay attention to wind direction. If the wind is blowing in the direction of some sensitive crops downwind, stop spraying. Don’t take the risk. Come back later in the day or the next day when the direction of the wind has shifted away from the sensitive crops.
- If you can, keep your nozzles as close to the target as possible while still producing a uniform distribution of spray on the target. This doesn’t cost any money as long as it is practical to make it happen.
- When you’re ready to change nozzles, consider selecting nozzles that produce much fewer of the extremely small droplets that are most likely to drift away. Low-drift nozzles are in the market and do a tremendous job of eliminating extremely small, drift-prone droplets from the droplet spectrum. This is especially important when spraying systemic chemicals like Glyphosate. Since the active ingredients in these types of chemicals are translocated, not requiring a thorough coverage on the target weeds, there is no need to use small droplets that increases the risk of drift.
- There are chemicals that are designed to increase the droplet size, and reduce the number of very small droplets when added into the spray mixture. Most of them are some sort of polymer that tends to increase the viscosity and density of the spray mixture which leads to larger droplets. This, however, should be the last defense against drift. First consider the other options such as better targeting of the spray and switching to low-drift nozzles.
- If you are using nozzles that produce relatively smaller droplets, avoid spraying under extremely hot and dry weather conditions. Under these conditions, evaporation of liquid from a droplet decreases its mass rapidly, increasing the drift distance of droplets.
- Pay attention to conditions that may be conducive to formation of a phenomenon called thermal inversion. Normally, warm air rises up. So, during late morning to early evening, the surface temperature is usually warmer than the air temperature near the ground. So, the small droplets discharged from a nozzle may follow this normal air movement from ground up, and eventually evaporate during this process. However, during very early morning (before sunrise) or sometime after the sunset, the air temperature at some distance above the ground may be warmer than the ground temperature. Under these conditions, the warm air above the ground is trapped between the ground and the inversion layer. Under these conditions, as shown in the picture below, the small droplets suspended in the air simply follow the horizontal air movement miles away from the application site. So, avoid spraying during very early in the morning or very late in the evening, if the weather is extremely calm.
Practicing the recommendations I mentioned in this article will help you reduce the risk of spray drift significantly. At the end, you will be the one making spraying decisions. If there is any doubts about a spraying job that might result in drift, wait until there is no longer that element of doubt.
More detailed discussion on these tips and other drift reduction strategies are outlined in following OSUE Extension Fact Sheets available online:
FABE- 523 (http://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/fabe-523), and
FABE 524 (http://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/fabe-524)
Two New Soil Fertility Factsheets Now AvailableAuthor(s): Steve Culman
Two new factsheets summarizing key components of the work to update the Tri-State Fertilizer Recommendations are now available.
Updated Grain Nutrient Removal Rates
How many pounds of nutrients are removed with every bushel of corn, soybean and wheat harvested? This factsheet reports new numbers and shows how nutrient removal rates in harvested grain have decreased over the past 25 years.
More information: go.osu.edu/grain
Converting Soil Test Values: Mehlich-3, Bray P, Ammonium Acetate
The updated Tri-State Fertilizer Recommendations will use the Mehlich-3 extractant as the new standard for fertilizer recommendations. This factsheet provides simple, standardized conversions that allow users to convert back and forth from these different extractants.
More information: go.osu.edu/mehlich
Respiratory Alert - Wheat harvest may expose farmers to vomitoxin and other moldy conditions in the grain dust
This year, due of the wet conditions we experienced during the spring, Fusarium head blight, also known as head scab, developed in a few localized areas of the state. Grain harvested from scab-affected fields is often contaminated with vomitoxin and other mycotoxins, because the disease and toxins go hand in hand. Severely affected kernels are usually small, shriveled, lightweight, covered with pinkish-white fungal mycelium, and most importantly, heavily contaminated with mycotoxins. Compared to healthy kernels, scabby kernels break easily during grain harvest, transport, and other forms of grain handling, increasing the number of fine particles and the amount of dust in the grain lot. Dust in grain harvested from scab-affected fields contain a mixture of tiny pieces of kernels, spikes, and straw, all of which are contaminated with vomitoxin, as well as pieces of fungal mycelium (mold).
Breathing grain dust can have adverse effects on the human respiratory system. When the dust is also suspect of mycotoxins, it is especially necessary to take precautions.
Wearing a disposable, 2-strap N95 mask (respirator) helps protect the worker from breathing in dusty, moldy and toxic substances. This type of personal protection equipment will filter out at least 95% of the dust and mold in the air. The 1-strap mask does not have this level of protection, and is basically worthless in agricultural environments.
Photo provided by Central States Center for Ag Safety & Health
How to wear the N95 correctly
Make sure you wear the N95 whenever working in dusty and moldy environments, especially at the grain storage and handling bins.
- The mask should have a tight fit over your nose and mouth, and requires contact with smooth skin. Facial hair, eyeglasses and certain dental appliances can prevent the mask from making a seal around your face.
- The N95 respirator is available in many sizes and various configurations, making sure the proper fit can be made.
- Always use both straps to hold the mask in place and prevent air from leaking in around the edges.
How to test your respirator for proper fit
Ideally the N95 should be fit-tested for each worker. Once a fit-test is performed, the worker will know which type provides the best fit. Then before each use, perform a seal test to be sure the mask fits snugly
- Negative pressure check:
Place both hands completely over the mask and inhale sharply. The mask should pull into your face. If you feel any air leaking around your face or eyes, adjust the nosepiece and straps for a tighter fit.
- Positive pressure check:
Place both hands completely over the mask and breathe out sharply. Be sure to cover the exhalation valve if your mask is equipped with one. No air should leak out of the mask if it fits properly. If air leaks, adjust the nosepiece and straps for a tighter fit.
When to throw out the N95 mask
Consider the N95 respirator similar to the air filter in your vehicle.
- When the mask gets clogged beyond a comfortable condition, replace it with a new mask. Likewise, if the inside of the mask becomes dirty, dispose of it.
- Replace masks if they become wet, torn or have stretched out straps
- N95s are made to be disposable, they cannot be cleaned or disinfected.
There are no recommendations for how many minutes or hours a mask will last in agricultural environments. A face mask filter is rated to absorb a total mass of 200mg, however on the farm, the time to reach this level is not known. Each respirator will be affected by personal hygiene, breathing resistance and density of the air contaminants. Each job will vary - as will the heat, humidity and other environmental conditions while performing the job.
A 2-strap N95 respirator is the best form of protection from moldy and dusty grain dust. Protect yourself and all workers exposed to wheat dust during the Ohio wheat harvest.
For more information on respirators for farm use, consult the OSU Extension Factsheet: Dust and Mold, AEX 892.2.11 https://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/aex-892211
Reminder - Western ARS Agronomy Field Day, Wednesday July 17thAuthor(s): Harold Watters, CPAg/CCA
The Western Agricultural Research Station Agronomy Field Day will be held July 17th. Hear our researchers thoughts and recommendations on how to manage this interesting season. We will have the field day - rain or shine.
Held at the OSU Western Agricultural Research Station at 7721 South Charleston Pike, South Charleston (https://oardc.osu.edu/facility/western-agricultural-research-station)
Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. and the event will start promptly at 9:00 a.m.
- 9:00 Corn Row Width – Technology vs. Agronomy – John Fulton, Alex Lindsey
- 9:45 Organic matter, what’s the difference
- Organic Matter Measurements on the Go? – Alex Lindsey
- Long Term Tillage Continuous Corn Trials – Harold Watters
- 10:30 Grow it, Kill it
- Cover Crops and Forages – Rory Lewandowski
- Herbicide Mode of Action Demo – Mark Loux, Tony Dobbels
- 12:00 Lunch provided – let us know you are coming
- 1:00 Barley and Double Crop Soybeans – Laura Lindsey
- 1:45 Delayed planting impacts
- Corn & Soybean Diseases – Pierce Paul
- Stinkbugs and hole punchers – Andy Michel
- 2:30 Using UAV's for Data Collection – Trevor Witt, Kansas State University
- 3:00 Thank you, safe trip home
Cost is free and open to the public. But please tell us you are coming.
Staging corn development in 2019Author(s): Peter Thomison
Corn development varies tremendously across Ohio because of planting dates that range from late April to early July. Some corn is tasseling and silking but in many counties, corn stages range from V7-V12. Moreover, it is not unusual to see striking differences in plant height and growth within cornfields.
It is important to understand corn growth and development in order to determine the health and status of the crop for effective use of management practices (e.g. application of post-emergence chemicals) and assessment of stress events (e.g. flooding, drought, hail, etc.).
Staging corn development is usually fairly straightforward. Starting with the first leaf, which has a short rounded leaf tip (sometime characterized as the “indicator” leaf), count the number of leaves with visible leaf collars. The collar is the yellow green band that appears at the junction of the leaf blade and leaf sheath. Counting leaf collars to determine the vegetative stage is feasible until the lower leaves can no longer be identified. At about the V6 (six-leaf collar) stage, increasing stalk and nodal growth combine to tear the smallest lower leaves from the plant. This results in degeneration and eventual loss of lower leaves which makes it difficult to locate the lower leaves (especially the first rounded leaf). Weathering as a result of excessive rainfall, leaf senescence, and chemical applications also contribute to lower leaf deterioration.
You can estimate what leaf stage of development a particular field is at using its planting date and the growing degree days it is accumulated since planting. University research indicates that from VE to V10 (ten leaf collars), leaf emergence occurs for every 82 to 84 GDDs accumulated (Nielsen, 2008; Abendroth et al., 2011). From leaf stage V10 to the final leaf, leaf collar emergence occurs more rapidly at approximately one leaf every 50 GDDs.
The following examples (from Nielsen, 2019) show how to apply this information
“A field was planted on April 28, but you do not know exactly when it emerged. Since planting, approximately 785 GDDs have accumulated. If you assume that the crop emerged in about 120 GDDs, then the estimated leaf stage for the crop would be about V8. This estimate is calculated by first subtracting 120 from 785 to account for the estimated thermal time to emergence, then dividing the result (665) by 82 (equal to V8.1).”
“A field was planted on April 28 and emerged on May 5. Since May 5, approximately 1220 GDDs have accumulated. Your familiarity with these calculations tells you that the crop is likely beyond V10 (equal to 10 x 82 or 820 GDDs since emergence). So, first subtract 820 from 1220 (knowing the crop is at least at V10). Divide the result (400) by 50 to equal 8 additional leaves; for a total estimated leaf stage of V18.”
Growth-limiting stresses and conditions (soil moisture deficits, nutrient deficiencies, compaction, etc.) affect the accuracy of these predictions (Nielsen, 2019). Nevertheless, this method may be useful in timing when plants reach an approximate stage of growth.
Another method for the staging development of older plants (with few or no lower leaves) requires first splitting the stalk neatly down the middle and looking for the first noticeably elongated stalk internode. This internode is usually ½ to ¾ inch long. Carefully identify the leaf whose leaf sheath attaches to this node. The fifth leaf is usually attached to the node above this elongated internode. Continue counting the remainder of the leaves with leaf collars to complete leaf stage determination of the plant. Check out a picture showing this in https://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/corn/news/timeless/VStageMethods.html (from Dr. Bob Nielson at Purdue).
Abendroth, L.J., R.W. Elmore, M.J. Boyer, and S.K. Marlay. 2011. Corn growth and development. PMR 1009. Iowa State University Extension, Ames, Iowa.
Nielsen, R.L. 2019. Determining Corn Leaf Stages. Corny News Network, Purdue Univ. https://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/corn/news/timeless/VStageMethods.html (URL accessed 7/15/2019).
Nielsen, R.L. 2019. Use Thermal Time to Predict Leaf Stage Development in Corn. Corny News Network, Purdue Univ. [On-Line]. Available at http://www.kingcorn.org/news/timeless/VStagePrediction.html (verified 7/15/2019)
Thinking about Cover Crops…… thoughts to consider
Decisions, decisions these days. When it comes to selecting the right cover crop for your farm, there is no one-size-fits-all option. This document is to help those of you new to cover crops with the thoughts, questions, and decisions, one needs to make when selecting cover crops. Planting cover crops on prevent planting acres protects the soil from further water and wind erosion.
This is here to help you make a plan and eliminate stress. Cover Crop selection is based on many different factors. What works on one field may not work on an adjacent field. Each farmer has different goals and ideal practices for their farms. Doing your homework prior to purchasing or planting cover crops can save you time and money.
Additionally, whether you are a no-till, minimum till, organic, or conventional tillage farmer, cover crops will function differently in each of these practices. While this worksheet may seem extensive, we ask that you use it to help simplify your decisions of selecting cover crops. This worksheet is designed for either beginners or long term cover crop users. Consider a whole systems approach to farm management for lasting improvements to your soil health. Remember fitting the cover crop to the scenario or goal is key. You will need to do some homework after answering these questions but hopefully, you know the questions you will need to have answered or other questions that could arise for your farming practices.
- What is the budgeted amount per acre I am willing to spend on cover crops?
- Is this only the cost of seed or does this include planting time, fuel, management and termination of the cover crop?
- Are there any cost-share programs through my:
- County Commissioners
- Am I taking a prevent plant option?
- Do I know the dates that I can plant the cover crop or restrictions with programs from the standpoint of crop insurance, EQIP (NRCS program), FSA or other programs I may be a part of?
- Did I explore the option for an MFP payment through the FSA Office based upon using cover crops?
Please note programs under #2 could have limitations to the species, rate, the life of cover crop and type of cover crop one chooses – know these limitations
- What are the goals of my cover crop?
- Reducing erosion
- Nitrogen source
- Nitrogen scavenger
- Soil builder
- Erosion fighter
- Weed fighter
- Good grazing
- Quick growth
- Lasting residue
- Mechanical forage harvest value
- Grain/seed harvest value
- Interseeding with a cash crop
Questions to ask before purchasing or planting cover crops.
- Are the weeds in the current field under control?
- Are there drainage issues in this field?
- Am I using a prevent plant option that eliminates certain cover crops from my listing?
- Are there restrictions with the herbicide/herbicides used on my field?
- Are the restrictions with the seed treatment/treatments used on current or prior crops planted in the field?
- Are there restrictions with the insecticide/insecticides used on my field?
- What are future plans as a cash crop?
- Am I required to have an over-wintering cover crop for one of the programs I am enrolled in?
- Am I using this as a true cover crop or are there other uses for this cover crop?
- Am I trying to use this for haying, grazing or a mechanically harvesting as a forage?
- If so, does this require other fertilizer sources?
- Will I be potentially using this field for manure?
- Am I trying to use this for haying, grazing or a mechanically harvesting as a forage?
- Who will I purchase my seed from?
- Do they have experience with cover crops or are they just selling me seed?
- Can they help answer my questions?
- If purchasing from a neighbor or other farmer?
- Has the seed been germination tested?
- Has the seed been tested in 50 states for noxious weeds
- Do they have experience with cover crops or are they just selling me seed?
- Do I understand what the difference between seed and pure live seed is?
- The calculation for pure live seed is referred to here https://extension.psu.edu/calculating-the-price-of-pure-live-seed
- Is the seed I am requesting even available?
- Does it fit my budget?
- Do I need to drive and pick up my seed or is it being delivered?
- If being delivered how soon will I get the seed?
- Can the seed be returned if I don’t use it?
- If not able to be returned, can I store the seed for use at another time?
- Does the program that I am enrolled in via NRCS, FSA, SWCD have requirements prior to purchasing the seed?
Seeding Rates and Dates
- If using cover crops please refer to your NRCS Appendix A at https://efotg.sc.egov.usda.gov/references/public/OH/Appendix_A_cover_crop_7_1_19_v3.pdf. This guide will assist with dates and rates of planting based upon NRCS guidelines.
- An additional resource would be located at www.mccc.msu.edu under the selector tool. This will help with the pros and cons of the cover crops one is choosing.
- Another great resource is the book called Managing Cover Crops Profitability, 3rd Edition. (See helpful documents section for link)
Planting Cover Crops?
- How will I plant my cover crop seed?
- Arial seeding
- Do I know the correct seeding rate?
- Note: Rate changes due to the method of seeding.
- Am I using a mixture of cover crops?
- Do I have the correct rates calculated?.
- Do I have access to these methods of seeding?
- What species will I select?
- Are there limits to the species I select due to current weather conditions?
- Are there diseases, I need to worry about with this cover crop?
- How will terminate my cover crop?
- Winter kill
- When will I terminate my cover crop?
Other helpful Documents, Websites or Prior Articles about Cover Crops
- Cover Crop Economics: https://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Topic-Rooms/Cover-Crops/Cover-Crops-Economics
- Managing Cover Crops Profitably, Third Edition, https://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Books/Managing-Cover-Crops-Profitably-3rd-Edition
- Midwest Cover Crops Tool Selector, http://mccc.msu.edu/selector-tool/
- Midwest Cover Crops Field Guide, 2nd Edition, available at https://ag.purdue.edu/agry/dtc/Pages/CCFG.aspx
- Cover Crop Termination: https://efotg.sc.egov.usda.gov/references/public/IN/NRCS_Cover_Crop_Termination_Guidelines_Ver_3_Sept_2014.pdf
- Using corn as a cover crop https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/201919/using-corn-cover-crop
- Using soybeans as a cover crop https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-21/considerations-using-soybeans-cover-crop
- Noxious Weeds in Cover Crop Seed and Seed Germination https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/2019-21/noxious-weeds-cover-crop-seed-and-seed-germination
- Don’t leave your field naked if taking the prevent plant option https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/201918/don%E2%80%99t-leave-your-fields-naked-if-taking-prevent-plant-option-corn
- Forage Shortage and Prevent Planting Acres…. Think Oats https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/201919/forage-shortage-and-prevented-planting-acres%E2%80%A6-think-oats
- 2019 Challenge: Forage Production Options for Ohio https://agcrops.osu.edu/newsletter/corn-newsletter/201919/2019-challenge-forage-production-options-ohio
Kladivko, E., Sundermeier, A. P., Tenuta, A., et al. (2014). Midwest cover crops field guide (2nd ed.). United States: Midwest Cover Crops Council.
Labarge, G., Ward, A, et al. (2018). A Field Guide to Identifying Critical Resource Concerns and Best Management Practices for Implementation. Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University.
Managing Cover Crops Profitably, Third Edition, https://www.sare.org/Learning-Center/Books/Managing-Cover-Crops-Profitably-3rd-Edition
Natural Resources Conservation Service – Conservation Practice Standard Nutrient Management Code 590 (OH 590-1) https://efotg.sc.egov.usda.gov/references/public/OH/11-01-2012_Ohio_590_Standard.pdf
Sustainable Crop Rotations with Cover Crops (Ohio State University Factsheet SAG-9), https://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/SAG-9
The Biology of Soil Compaction (Ohio State University Extension Factsheet SAG-10), https://ohioline.osu.edu/factsheet/SAG-10
- What is the budgeted amount per acre I am willing to spend on cover crops?
Ohio Manure Science Review 2019
The 2019 Ohio Manure Science Review is scheduled for Wednesday, August 7 at JIMITA Holsteins, a 400-plus-acre family dairy farm at 9877 Strasburg Bolivar Road NW in Strasburg Ohio. Strasburg is about 20 miles south of Canton, Tuscarawas County, in Northeast Ohio.
Registration is $25 by July 30; $30 after July 30; and includes coffee, doughnuts, and lunch and the afternoon tour. Participants can earn Certified Livestock Manager and Certified Crop Advisor credits.
Morning sessions will discuss manure nutrient uptake by crops, applying manure to emerging crops, reducing phosphorus runoff, manure-related rules and legal issues, and assessing the value of manure beyond its nutrients, including its impact on crop production and soil health.
Field demonstrations will look at calibrating manure spreaders, stockpiling solid manure, side-dressing crops with liquid manure, manure application using injection and shallow tillage, and silage leachate and manure handling.
Full program details, including the speakers, topics, and a mailable registration form, are available at go.osu.edu/2019MSR or by calling 330-202-3533. Online registration is available through Aug. 1 at go.osu.edu/msr2019.
The event runs from 9:20 a.m. to 3 p.m. with the morning being dedicated to educational sessions and the afternoon towards equipment. From 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. there is an optional tour of Bull Country Compost, located at 10316 Kohr Road NW in Dundee.
In addition to College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Science, the event’s collaborators are the Tuscarawas Soil and Water Conservation District, Ohio Department of Agriculture, Cooper Farms, and Ohio Farm Bureau.
Manure Science Review’s many sponsors include the Ohio Livestock Coalition and some of its partners: the Ohio Poultry Association, Ohio Pork Council, Ohio Dairy Producers Association, and Ohio Cattlemen’s Association.
The Ohio Noxious Weed Law - A Tool in the Prevention of Waterhemp and Palmer AmaranthAuthor(s): Mark Loux
Waterhemp and Palmer amaranth are both now listed on the Ohio noxious weed law, which means that landowners must take steps to control infestations and prevent further spread. Since these are annual weeds, preventing spread is achieved by preventing plants from reaching maturity and producing seed. This is the basis for our “No pigweed left behind” effort, for which the goal is to create an understanding that the only way to beat these weeds is to prevent seed. Prevention needs to occur in any area that might be subject to infestation, such as roadsides, parks, conservation seedings, parks, etc, in addition to agricultural fields. The entities managing these areas are responsible for recognizing and controlling infestations of waterhemp and Palmer amaranth, but this does not always occur. Not everyone involved in crop production or land management is aware of the waterhemp/Palmer problem to begin with, and many managers are busy enough that preventing noxious weed problems has low priority.
Our advice is to pay attention to what’s happening in your area or in the areas that you farm, with the goal of becoming aware of new infestations early enough that plant maturity and seed can still be prevented, regardless of where they may be occurring. We recommend as a first step contacting the land manager or owner to explain the issue, make them aware that they have an infestation, and request that action be taken. However, where it’s not possible to have this conversation, or there is a refusal to take action, the Ohio noxious weed law can be used to try to force action. A two-page summary of the noxious weed law that can be found here on the OSU Ag Law Blog, and also links directly to the law itself.
The basic idea here is that following an unsuccessful attempt to work with a landowner or manager, noxious weed issues should be reported to township trustees, and this must be done in writing. The trustees then have the responsibility to deal with the issue, and the method for doing so varies depending upon what the land is used for and who is managing it. If it’s necessary to use the noxious weed law, be sure to start the process early enough in summer, well before potential seed production. There is a need to allow time for all of the steps in the process to occur, and for notifications to be received and acted on (or not). Our experience is that not all landowners and managers will take action upon first notification, and in addition to action, their response to notification can include minimal response of protesting their need to act. Waiting too late to start the process can result in lack of resolution of these issues in time to prevent plant maturity and seed production. The noxious weed law has been used several times within the last two years to force managers to control Palmer amaranth, and could be used to accomplish the same for waterhemp, which was recently added to the list. Consider the law a tool to prevent the establishment and spread of these weeds when other methods are ineffective.
Western Bean Cutworm: Numbers Starting to IncreaseAuthor(s): Amy Raudenbush, Kimberley Gault, Mark Badertscher, Lee Beers, CCA, Bruce Clevenger, CCA, Sam Custer, Tom Dehaas, Allen Gahler, Jason Hartschuh, CCA, Andrew Holden, Stephanie Karhoff, Ed Lentz, CCA, Rory Lewandowski, CCA, David Marrison, KJ Martin, Cecelia Lokai-Minnich, Les Ober, CCA, Eric Richer, CCA, Garth Ruff, Mike Sunderman, Jeff Stachler, Alan Sundermeier, CCA, Curtis Young, CCA, Chris Zoller, Andy Michel, Kelley Tilmon
Week three of The Ohio State University Western bean cutworm (WBC) monitoring network has resulted in an increase of moths captured. Last week’s trap count included WBC adults captured from July 8 – July 13. A total of 24 counties monitored 75 traps across Ohio. Overall, trap counts increased, resulting in a total of 287 WBC adults (18 total last week) and a statewide average of 3.8 moths/trap (up from 0.3 average last week) (Figure 1).
While it is not likely we are at peak flight for WBC in Ohio just yet, there are counties that reported a trap average that indicates scouting for egg masses should begin. These counties include: Champaign, Clark, Coshocton, Fulton, Hardin, Lucas and Miami.
Figure 1. Average Western bean cutworm adult per trap followed by total number of traps in the county in parentheses for week ending July 13th, 2019.
Scouting and management.
- Check pre-tassel corn approaching tassel fields first – females prefer these fields to deposit eggs.
- To scout for eggs or larvae, choose at least 20 consecutive plants in 5 random locations (scout different areas of the field that may be in different growth stages).
- Inspect the uppermost 3–4 leaves.
- Threshold (when to consider treatment):
- Field corn, if >8% of inspected plants have eggs or larvae.
- Sweet corn, if >4% of inspected plants have eggs or larvae for the processing market or on >1% of plants for fresh-market.
If infestations exceed threshold, many insecticides are available to adequately control WBC, especially those containing a pyrethroid. However, as with any ear-burrowing caterpillar pest, timing is critical. Insecticide applications must occur after egg hatch, or after tassel emergence, but before caterpillars enter the ear. If eggs have hatched, applications should be made after 95% of the field has tassel. If eggs have not hatched, monitor for the color change. Hatch will occur within 24–48 hours once eggs turn purple. To search for larval injury after it has occurred, search the corn for ears having feeding holes on the outside of the husks.
Life cycle and feeding. Adult moths (what we monitor in the traps) will be making their way into corn fields where females lay eggs on the uppermost portion of the flag leaf. Eggs are laid in unevenly distributed clusters of 5–200, but averaging about 50 per cluster, and hatch within 5–7 days (Figure 2). Eggs first appear white, then tan and then a dark purple. Once eggs turn purple, they will hatch within 24 to 48 hours (Figure 3). In pre-tassel corn, caterpillars will move to the whorl to feed on the flag leaf and unemerged tassel. Once the tassel emerges, larvae then move to the ear, while feeding on corn pollen, leaf tissue, and silks. Later they will enter the ear through the tip, or by chewing through the side of the husk. Damage occurs from both direct feeding and from mold problems at feeding sites.
Figure 2. WBC egg mass
Figure 3. WBC larvae hatching from egg mass. Size compared to US dime.
“Working Lands” Forage Field Days PlannedAuthor(s): Garth Ruff
The Ohio Department of Agriculture Working Lands Buffer Program allows for forage to be grown and harvested from field edge buffers in the Western Lake Erie Basin. Join OSU Extension, Ohio Forage and Grassland Council, and your local Soil and Water Conservations Districts to learn about the Working Lands Program.
Topics to be covered at these field days include: Soil Fertility ~ Seed Bed Preparation ~ Forage Species Selection ~ Seeding Methods ~ and More!
Field Days will be held at various locations throughout the Western Basin watershed.
Sandusky/Ottawa County: August 14 - 2086 S Woodrick Rd, Oak Harbor. Allen Gahler 419-334-6340
Crawford County: August 15 – Location TBA. Jason Hartsuch 419-562-8731
Henry County: August 20 – G214 Co. Rd 12 Holgate. Garth Ruff 419-592-0806
Hancock County: August 22 - 19178 Twp Rd 65 Jenera. Gary Wilson 419-348-3500
All Field Days Will Begin at 4:00 p.m.
For those unfamiliar with the program, earlier this spring the Ohio Department of Agriculture announced a new conservation program entitled the "Ohio Working Lands Buffer Program" to establish year-round vegetative cover on eligible cropland in the Western Lake Erie Basin Watershed.
Land owners can receive annual payments for maintaining and harvesting hay and forage on land that acts as a buffer on cropland to provide another line of defense to filter surface water. Only cropland acres where sediment and nutrients have the potential to be transported from the field and enter environmentally sensitive areas are eligible for the program.
About the C.O.R.N. Newsletter
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.
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.
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