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Drought projections and fungicide applications

By Anne Dorrance and Pierce Paul, Ohio State University Extension

There have been several calls this past week for fungicide applications on corn and soybean at all different growth stages. So let’s review what might be at stake here.


Frogeye leaf spot and white mold on susceptible varieties when the environment is favorable for disease easily pay the cost of application plus save yield losses. Let’s dig a bit deeper. Both of these diseases are caused by fungi but frogeye leaf spot is a polycyclic disease, meaning that multiple infections occur on new leaves through the season while white mold is monocyclic and the plant is really only susceptible during the flowering stage. Both of these diseases are also limited geographically in the state. White mold is favored in northeast Ohio and down through the central region where fields are smaller and air flow can be an issue. Frogeye has been found on highly susceptible varieties south of 70, but it is moving a bit north, so it is one that I am watching.… Continue reading

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Ohio No-till events and COVID-19

By Randall Reeder

As I write this in early July, we still plan to have our three events August 19-20. We are confident we can safely gather 50 to 75 at each site. We’ll stay outside if necessary. Bring a lawn chair and expect to leave some space around you. Masks are optional. (If you’re sick, please stay home.)

Paul Jasa, University of Nebraska, will present “No-till Seeding Equipment: Adjustments and Operation” at all three locations. The Nature Conservancy is covering Paul Jasa’s expenses.

Here are the dates, host and location for the three events:

• Aug. 19, 6:00 to ~9:00pm., Nathan Brown, 6110 Panhandle Road, Hillsboro, OH 45133;

• Aug. 20, 9:00 am to noon, Fred Yoder, 7050 Butler Avenue, Plain City, OH 43064-9694;

• Aug. 20, 6:00 to ~9:00 pm., Keith Kemp, 959 Georgetown-Verona Rd., West Manchester, OH 45382.

At each location, about an hour of the program will be specific for that site.… Continue reading

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Agricultural exports doing relatively well

Though the COVID-19 pandemic has cut demand for many U.S. products, agricultural exports are holding up well, according to a new analysis by an agricultural economist with The Ohio State University.

The reason?

“We all have to eat,” said Ian Sheldon, a professor in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).

Even when consumer income declines, the demand for food changes very little, Sheldon said. People in the developed world might be dining out less frequently, but they’re still buying groceries.

Exports of U.S. agricultural goods, including soybeans, which are Ohio’s top agricultural export, are up, Sheldon said. By the start of June, the amount of U.S. soybeans exported was 200,000 tons higher than it was for the same period in 2019.

“The pandemic has affected ag trade, but not by as much as we thought it would,” said Sheldon, who serves as the Andersons Endowed Chair in Agricultural Marketing, Trade, and Policy in the CFAES Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics.… Continue reading

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Dry weather stressing Ohio crops

Hot and dry weather came back into the state causing drought stress in crops, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture decreased from 69 percent adequate or surplus last week to 30 percent adequate or surplus this week. Average temperatures for the week were approximately 5 degrees above historical normals, and the entire state averaged less than 0.2 inch of precipitation. There were 6.6 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending July 5. Farmers applied herbicide to soybeans, sprayed weeds, baled hay, and harvested wheat. Winter wheat harvested was at 51 percent, ahead of the five-year average by 10 percentage points, boosted by the warm, dry weather. Soybeans blooming was at 27 percent, 11 percentage points ahead of the five-year average. Alfalfa hay first cutting reached 100 percent, 12 percentage points ahead of the five-year average. Fifty-three percent of corn was considered good or excellent and 66 percent of pasture and range was considered good or excellent compared to a five-year average of 59 percent.… Continue reading

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Soybean gall midge

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff

Over the years, many Ohio farmers have adopted an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach when it comes to protecting their soybean crop. With assistance from Ohio State University Extension entomologists, certified crop advisors, and ag retail agronomists, farmers have implemented the practice of regularly field scouting and insect identification, which are key first steps in crop protection.

Familiar insect pests such as: soybean aphids, brown marmorated stinkbugs, or common defoliators such as bean leaf beetles, Japanese beetle adults and grass hoppers, are regularly scouted for during the growing season. Scouting for the unknown pests however, is not typically done by farmers.

A few years ago, a new insect pest was found infesting soybean fields in Nebraska.

“This new pest had never been seen before, and an insect taxonomist had to help make the formal identification to determine that it actually was a new and not a previously named species,” said Kelley Tilmon, associate professor and State Specialist for field crop entomology at The Ohio State University.… Continue reading

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Are foliar fungicides plus insecticide tank mixture applications to soybeans profitable?

By Michael Staton, Michigan State University Extension Soybean Educator, with additional comments from Dr. Laura Lindsey, OSU Extension State Soybean Specialist.

Are foliar fungicides plus insecticide tank mixture applications to soybeans profitable? On-farm research results collected from 2017 to 2019 by Michigan State University Extension can help soybean producers decide if they should apply foliar fungicide and insecticide tank mixtures in 2020. Similar research has also been performed in Ohio and across states in the North Central Region.

Michael Staton, MSU Extension Soybean Educator

Soybean producers are interested in increasing soybean yields and income by applying foliar tank mixtures of a fungicide and an insecticide. However, extension entomologists do not recommend insurance tank mixes like this for a variety of reasons, unless insects are over threshold. The Michigan soybean on-farm research program coordinated a total of 15 trials from 2017 to 2019 to evaluate the yield and income performance of foliar fungicide and insecticide tank mixtures.

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NCGA submits fueling regulation comments to EPA

The National Corn Growers Association submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the Agency’s Fuels Regulatory Streamlining proposed rule to update and streamline certain fuel regulations.

Clear and objective regulations around the manufacture and sale of fuels, including existing E85 for use in flex-fuel vehicles, E15, and future mid-level ethanol blends, are important to corn growers.

NCGA President Kevin Ross asked EPA to ensure proposed changes to the definition of gasoline do not add new and unnecessary regulatory burdens for E85, keep pathways to higher ethanol blends open, and build on the successful rule for year-round E15 by addressing additional regulatory barriers to expanding E15 sales.

Ross urged EPA to, “follow through and take action to update E15 labeling and equipment certification requirements. Streamlining E15 labeling and certifying current E10 equipment for E15 would support more retailers offering this fuel to consumers,” he wrote.… Continue reading

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USDA reminds Ohio producers to complete crop acreage reports

USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) reminds Ohio producers to complete crop acreage reports by the applicable deadline for their county. Acreage reporting dates vary by crop and by county. Contact your FSA county office for a list of acreage reporting deadlines by crop.

“To make sure you’re eligible for many USDA programs, you need to file an accurate crop acreage report by the applicable deadline,” said Leonard Hubert State Executive Director in Ohio. “Our FSA staff is standing by to help you with your acreage reports, including providing maps.”

The following acreage reporting dates are applicable for:

July 15, 2020 — Report all your Burley Tobacco, Cabbage (Planted 3/19/20-5/31/20), Corn, Grain Sorghum, Hybrid Corn Seed, Spring Oats, Popcorn, Potatoes, Soybeans, Sugar Beets, Tomatoes and all other crops. Report Perennial Forage Crops.

Aug. 15, 2020 — Report Cabbage (Planted 6/1/20-7/20/20).

Sept. 30, 2020 — Report Aquaculture.

Dec. 15, 2020 — Fall Barley, Fall Wheat, and all other Fall-Seeded Small Grains.… Continue reading

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Double-crop soybeans

By Dr. Laura Lindsey, OSU Extension State Soybean Specialist, Adapted from C.O.R.N. 2020-20

As small grains are harvested across the state, here are some management considerations for double-crop soybean production:

Relative maturity (RM) has little effect on yield when soybeans are planted during the first three weeks of May. However, the effect of RM can be larger for late planting. When planting soybean late, the latest maturing variety that will reach physiological maturity before the first killing frost is recommended. The suitable relative maturity for soybeans planted between July 1-10 is: 3.0 to 3.3 for Northern Ohio, 3.2 to 3.5 for Central Ohio, and 3.4 to 3.7 for Southern Ohio. This is to allow the soybean plants to grow vegetatively as long as possible to produce nodes where pods can form before vegetative growth is slowed due to flowering and pod formation.

Laura Lindsey, OSU Extension Soybean and Small Grains Specialist

Double-crop soybeans should be produced in narrow rows- 7.5 to 15-inch row spacing.

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H2Ohio update

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff

While the state of Ohio has been reeling from challenges brought on by the Coronavirus, H2Ohio was quietly implemented this spring by several farmers in the Maumee River Watershed using conservation practices of variable rate phosphorus application with their planters, and subsurface phosphorus placement. The recommended conservation practices in H2Ohio have not changed, however the original application agreement details have. State budget concerns due to the impact of COVID-19 placed funding for the H2Ohio program in question. On March 23, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine ordered all departments to reduce spending by 20% for the remainder of 2020 and also in 2021. In May, Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) Director Dorothy Pelanda, stated that the program would still be available to assist farmers in implementing select practices, however funding would not be available until the 2021 crop year.

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ODA partners with Extension to provide online pesticide recertification

During the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA), is partnering with the Ohio State University Extension Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP) to temporarily provide online recertification for pesticide applicators and fertilizer certificate holders whose licenses expired in spring of 2020. The online recertification will be available Monday, July 6. For commercial applicators, it will be available Aug. 10. For more information or to register for the online recertification, visit pested.osu.edu/onlinerecert.

The online option allows private applicators and fertilizer certificate holders due for training by March 31, 2020 and commercial applicators due for training by September 30, 2020 to meet their continuing education requirements. The cost for online training is $35 for private applicators and $10 for fertilizer certification. The price per credit hour for commercial applicators is $15. If you don’t know your license number, please call ODA at 614-728-6987, choose option 1.

Applicators are still required to meet their recertification requirements to renew licenses and certifications.… Continue reading

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Corn and soybeans emerged, wheat makes progress

Rainfall increased throughout the state at an opportune time, causing soil moisture to improve, according to Cheryl Turner, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. While precipitation increased overall, dry weather continued in a few areas of the state. Topsoil moisture, however, increased from 53 percent adequate or surplus last week to 69 percent adequate or surplus this week. Average temperatures for the week were approximately 1 degree above historical normals, and the entire state averaged just over 1 inch of precipitation. There were 5.2 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 28. During the week, farmers side dressed nitrogen on corn and applied herbicides to corn and soybeans. Winter wheat continued to mature while reporters continued to anticipate the start of harvest. Soybean planting progress reached 100 percent, ahead of the five-year average by 5 percentage points, while soybeans blooming was 11 percent. Corn emerged progress was 100 percent, 4 percentage points ahead of the five-year average.… Continue reading

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Senators urge EPA to reject “gap” SRE petitions

A bipartisan group of 16 Senators urged Environmental Protection Agency administrator Andrew Wheeler to immediately reject the 52 recently filed exemption petitions for prior compliance years. The letter expresses the Senators’ frustration and alarm that Administrator Wheeler is considering exemptions for refineries that either did not submit petitions or were not granted waivers in past years but are now seeking to circumvent a January 2020 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit.

U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) led the bipartisan letter with Senators Joni Ernst (R-IA), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) urging the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to reject petitions for Small Refinery Exemptions (SREs) under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for past compliance years. In the letter, the senators warn that granting these petitions would worsen the unprecedented economic challenges facing the biofuels industry and demand that the EPA apply the 10th Circuit decision nationally.… Continue reading

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Glyphosate developments

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) responded to two recent and significant legal developments concerning glyphosate that have occurred. First, a federal judge in California ruled that glyphosate cannot be labeled as “likely to cause cancer” under California’s Proposition 65, which requires businesses to provide warnings about significant exposures to chemicals that cause cancer. NCGA was a plaintiff in the lawsuit challenging the state’s plans to require all glyphosate products to be labeled with this warning.

The next day, Bayer announced that it has decided to settle thousands of lawsuits that accuse a link between glyphosate use and cancer.

“Corn farmers rely on glyphosate as an integral and essential part of their weed management, no-till and soil health plans. It has been on the market for more than 40 years and undergone extensive safety reviews in this time. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and numerous other regulatory bodies around the world have not found glyphosate to be carcinogenic, as was pointed out by the federal judge ruling that the product cannot be labeled as such in California.… Continue reading

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Bayer announces agreements to resolve major remaining Monsanto litigation

Bayer announced a series of agreements that will substantially resolve major outstanding Monsanto litigation, including U.S. Roundup product liability litigation, dicamba drift litigation and PCB water litigation.

The massive legal settlements total up to $10.9 billion to compensate roughly 125,000 people who have claimed to be harmed by products of its recently acquired subsidiary, the Monsanto Company. The company also is resolving dicamba drift litigation with a payment of up to $400 million. In addition Bayer is addressing most PCB water litigation exposure with a payment of approximately $820 million.

The funding for all of the measures will be sourced from free cash flow and Animal Health divestment. Cash payments related to the settlements are expected to start in 2020. Bayer currently assumes that the potential cash outflow will not exceed $5 billion in 2020 and $5 billion in 2021; the remaining balance would be paid in 2022 or thereafter. In order to finance these payments which are subject to tax treatment, Bayer can make use of existing surplus liquidity, future free cash flows, the proceeds from the Animal Health divestment, and additional bond issuances, which will provide flexibility in managing the settlement payments as well as upcoming debt maturities.… Continue reading

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Benefits of incorporating wheat in a three-crop rotation

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff

Amber waves of grain (often pictured as fields of wheat, swaying in the summer breeze) are as much of Americana as baseball, hotdogs, and apple pie. Incorporating wheat in a cropping rotation, however, has more benefits than just a pretty summer picture.

“The farms we regularly raise wheat on have had slightly better yields in the

other crops,” said Brad Haas, Wood county farmer, and past president of the Ohio Wheat Growers Association. “Those farms have had a slightly better yield and also lower diseases levels.”

While Haas likes raising quality wheat, and has done so for the past several decades, the biggest challenge he has faced the last two years has been finding fields available to plant in the right window after the fly free date that were fit, and did not have late soybeans in them.… Continue reading

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New fact sheet series for specialty crop growers focuses on dicamba and 2,4-D drift

Dicamba-related drift is causing significant stress for agricultural regulators, and soybean farmers this year. For many specialty crop growers, though, this is familiar ground as their crops are especially sensitive to drift.

Since 2016, soybean farmers have quickly adopted dicamba- and 2,4-D-ready crops in their fight against herbicide-resistant weeds. However, the expanded use of these herbicides during the growing season has led to an increased threat of drift damage for specialty crop growers.

High-value crops such as grapes, tomatoes, and sweet potatoes can be damaged by concentrations of 1/300th the labeled rate or lower. While recent legal issues have limited the use of three dicamba products for this growing season, both dicamba and 2,4-D will continue to pose a risk in areas with diversified or organic production.

A new fact sheet series, co-written by agricultural specialists at The Ohio State University and Purdue University, is available to help specialty crop growers prepare for and respond to possible dicamba and 2,4-D drift.… Continue reading

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Watch for frogeye this season

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, Product Manager, Seed Consultants, Inc.

Frogeye leaf spot is a disease that can impact soybean yields across this eastern Corn Belt. Typically, more prevalent in the southern growing regions, the disease can occur farther north as a result of weather favorable to its development.

The fungus that causes frogeye leaf spot (Cercospora sojina) survives in infected plant debris and can cause infections in growing plants when weather conditions are favorable. Frogeye leaf spot lesions produce spores that are easily transported by wind, acting as inoculum for leaf infections on other plants. The disease is promoted by warm, humid weather and will continue to develop on infected plants during patterns of favorable weather. With continued warm and wet weather patterns in the eastern Corn Belt during 2020, frogeye leaf spot could develop in some areas.

Frogeye leaf spot symptoms begin as small yellow spots that become larger lesions with gray centers and dark reddish-purple or brown borders.… Continue reading

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Grower coalition files amicus brief on behalf of soybean farmers

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader: a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean checkoff

Soybean growers risk suffering significant harm if they cannot use existing stocks of dicamba products. This statement was the leading argument in the amicus brief filed by a coalition of agricultural commodity organizations, including the American Soybean Association (ASA), on Tuesday, June 16, with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The brief was filed to inform the court that “granting the petitioners’ motion mid-growing season could have catastrophic consequences for growers and America’s agricultural community, which depend on being able to use the dicamba products for the next several weeks.  The Court should respect EPA’s expertise in managing existing stocks of formerly registered pesticide products and deny petitioners’ emergency motion,” the brief went on to say.

The grower coalition’s brief, makes a case for farmers caught in a highly frustrating and costly situation amid prime planting season and the narrow weed-control window.

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Distribution of waterhemp and Palmer amaranth in Ohio

By Mark Loux, Ohio State University Extension weed specialist

The maps that accompany this article show our current knowledge of waterhemp and Palmer amaranth distribution in Ohio. These are based on information from a survey of OSU Extension County Educators, along with information we had from samples submitted, direct contacts, etc. We still consider any new introductions of Palmer amaranth to be from an external source (brought in from outside Ohio) — hay or feed, infested equipment, CRP/cover/wildlife seedings. Palmer is not really spreading around the state, and as the map shows, we have had a number of introductions that were immediately remediated. The number of counties where an infestation is being managed is still low, and within those counties, the outbreak occurs in only a few fields still.

Waterhemp is much more widespread in Ohio and is spreading rapidly within the state from existing infestations to new areas via equipment, water, animals, etc.… Continue reading

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