61 articles

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Authors: Joe Ikley and Bill Johnson Many people have commented that we have the best stands of corn and soybean across the state that we have seen in many years. Our dry planting window certainly helped get crops uniformly established, but now we have been receiving many questions about herbicide carryover injury on crops this year. Any discussion about herbicide carryover will focus on three key components: environmental conditions since herbicide application; chemistry of the herbicides applied; and interactions between the herbicide and soil conditions. Weather is usually the driving component whenever we see injury from a wide variety of herbicides applied the previous year. While we have not been as dry as areas in the western corn belt, a look at our total precipitation from August 1st 2017 until June 1st of this year shows a large area of the state had 4 to 6 fewer inches of precipitation[Read More…]


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Author: John Obermeyer Several have asked about orange/yellow beetles that seem to be everywhere, especially on flowering plants. They are likely soldier beetles, also known as leatherwings. These beetles are about ½” long, with yellow wings and splashes of black. They resemble, and sometimes are confused with, fireflies. Both the adults and larvae, that spend their time in the soil, are predators of soft-bodied insects, e.g., eggs, caterpillars, etc. If the adults cannot find an abundance of prey, they will feed and gather on the pollen of flowering plants – a protein source for many insects. They do not cause harm to plants, they are good guys…do not smash, squish or spray them!


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Authors: Christian Krupke and John Obermeyer Pheromone trapping began for western bean cutworm moths this week. Within just one day several cooperators were reporting catches This is just the beginning of an extended moth emergence and flight, with their peak activity expected 2-3 weeks from now. Those in high-risk areas, i.e., sandy soils, high moth flight and WBC history, should be gearing up for field scouting of corn, even those with Bt-traits. Scouting of pre-tassel corn should begin once multiple moths are being captured regularly. In five different areas of a field, inspect 20 consecutive plants for egg masses which are laid on the upper surface of the top leaves of corn and/or larvae that may have hatched and crawled to the whorl and begun to feed. Usually the newest, vertical leaf is the best place to look for egg masses. Young larvae need pollen to survive, and female moths[Read More…]



Authors: Lyndon Kelley, Extension Irrigation Education, MSU Extension/Purdue Extension and Steve Miller, Irrigation Specialist, Biosystem and Agricultural Engineering Irrigation scheduling by accounting for changes in available soil moisture provides information on the timing and amount of water to apply to meet crop needs. “Checkbook” irrigation scheduling confirmed with soil moisture monitoring can improve irrigation scheduling decisions. Checkbook scheduling is discussed below. Checkbook method of irrigation scheduling follows the concept that the soil in your field is like a bank checking account. Rainfall and irrigation applications are deposits into the checking account. Rainfall and irrigation may need to be reduced to reflect the effective amount added to soil moisture. Daily water removal from evaporation and transpiration (evapotranspiration or ET) from the field and crop would be considered withdrawals from the account. Soil has a maximum amount of water that can be held (called Field Capacity), so water added beyond the soils[Read More…]





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Author: Shaun N. Casteel Over the last few years,  we have been documenting some    remarkable soybean yield responses (upwards of 13 bushels) to sulfur (S) in northwestern Indiana. I shared more details of these trials this winter and in various articles across the Midwest.  We do have other sites across Indiana that have seen modest yield improvements (3 to 7 bushels) and other sites with no response. We have experimented with several products, rates, and scenarios, but we have not tried everything. I have received numerous calls and emails on the subject, so I want to provide some answers and leanings. Is my field and soybeans responsive to sulfur? My recommendation to answer this question is based on a set rate of S at the beginning of the season compared to no application. We have tested granular AMS (ammonium sulfate, 21-0-0-24S), MES10, and elemental S at various S rates at[Read More…]


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Author: John Obermeyer Take a gander at the “Armyworm Pheromone Trap Report.” The number of moths suddenly flying this week has us wondering where females will lay their eggs? The correct answer would be lush, dense grasses. Maybe grass pastures? The current growth stage of wheat is not likely to be attractive, nor are grassy cover crops, as they should have been terminated by now. A handful of times over the years, I have been sent pictures of “back 40” cornfields, planted very late that were completely denuded in late June. A surprise to the neglectful producer! Consider this an alert that the possibility of unique, late-damage from armyworm exists this season. The good news is that should humidity stay high, armyworm larvae are very susceptible to fungal pathogens. Therefore, Mother Nature may take care of this pest for the rest of the year. Happy Scouting!  


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