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2015 pest updates and concerns for 2016

As we look forward to the 2016 crop year, we have to take a little look back to 2014 to see what pests hit us in 2015 in order to plan for next year.

Soybean insects

  • Aphids missed Ohio even though it was the “odd” year and they were supposed to be here. A cold winter last year and a wet mid-summer may have done our control for us.
  • Stink bugs are increasing in number and spreading. I am seeing this group of pests more as I scout soybeans in late fall — perhaps it’s global warming or just the arrival of a new invasive species but there are more here than ever. If you saw shriveled beans at harvest in 2015, do a better job of scouting next year. They tend to hit green soybean pods and suck the juices out reducing yield.
  • Bean leaf beetle has been a generally non-economical pest for a while now.
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It’s still dry out there

I was digging in one of my fields this weekend and see we are dry. Not parched dry like we were back in September and October but dry enough that at two plus feet deep, there was no pooling water. In fact soil conditions are good enough to plant, except that Christmas is next week and I live in central Ohio.

With conditions this dry we could still apply manure, spray a fall herbicide on winter annuals, and apply and incorporate fertilizer or lime. Folks tell me tile is going in very well.

Certainly we had planting delays due to excessive moisture for the third year in a row, but no harvest problems at all for a change. I use the CoCoRaHS network to record and track my rainfall amounts. Over the years I have watched 3-4 stations regularly to see what they get. This table below has the rainfall amounts in inches from April 1st to mid-October for the years 2011 to 2015.

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Fertilizer Certification from the Ohio Department of Agriculture

It is here. Step 1 – the Fertilizer Applicator law (SB 150), and Step 2 – the western lake Erie application restriction law (SB1). Both are now in effect.

  • You have three years to get certified.
  • If you apply fertilizer to 50 acres or more you must get certified, but you have until September 2017 to do that.
  • If you have a Pesticide License, then you’ll get a letter from ODA telling you when to get fertilizer applicator certified. You will attend a two-hour program.
  • If you don’t have a Pesticide License, but wish to apply fertilizer, you must get certified to apply fertilizer. You will attend a three-hour program.
  • For the new Fertilizer Certification training website: http://NutrientEducation.osu.edu.
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Farm safety net loophole closed

The U.S. Department of Agriculture last week finalized a rule to ensure that farm safety-net payments are issued only to active managers of farms that operate as joint ventures or general partnerships, consistent with the direction and authority provided by Congress in the 2014 Farm Bill. The action closes a loophole where individuals who were not actively part of farm management still received payments.

The changes apply to payments for 2016 and subsequent crop years for Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage Programs, Loan Deficiency Payments and Marketing Loan Gains realized via the Marketing Assistance Loan program. As required by Congress, the new rule does not apply to family farms, or change regulations related to contributions of land, capital, equipment or labor.

For more details, producers are encouraged to consult their local Farm Service Agency office.

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NCGA announces 2015 yield contest results

Improved seed varieties, advanced production techniques and innovative growing practices helped corn growers achieve ever-higher yields in the National Corn Growers Association 2015 National Corn Yield Contest. Entrants continued to far surpass the national average corn yield, setting a contest record with a new all-time high yield of just over 532 bushels per acre. Additionally, a record five national entries surpassed the 400-plus bushel per acre mark.

“The contest does more than just provide farmers an opportunity for friendly competition; it generates information that shapes future production practices across the industry,” said Brent Hostetler, chairman of NCGA’s Production and Stewardship Action Team. “The techniques contest winners first develop grow into broad advances that help farmers across the country excel in a variety of situations.  Our contest emphasizes how innovation, from growers and technology providers alike, enables us to meet the growing demand for food, feed, fuel and fiber.”

The National Corn Yield Contest is now in its 51st year and remains NCGA’s most popular program for members.

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Commodity Classic app available for 2016 event

Everything you need to know about the 2016 Commodity Classic can now be held in the palm of your hand.  The mobile app for the 2016 Commodity Classic, March 3-5, 2016, in New Orleans, Louisiana, is now available for download for iOS iPhone and iPad devices, Android phone and tablets and other mobile devices.
To download the 2016 Commodity Classic app at no charge, visit the app store for your device.  Type Commodity Classic in the search bar of the iTunes Store or Google Play.  Download links are also available at commodityclassic.com/app.
“This tool is a great feature and will certainly come in handy for those attending Commodity Classic,” said event Co-Chair Sam Butler, a soybean grower from Alabama. “With so many sessions and things to experience in so many locations over several days, this app can help attendees stay organized and get the most out of our convention and trade show.”
With the mobile app, you can access the entire Commodity Classic schedule, get details on the dozens of educational sessions, browse the list of exhibitors, and receive immediate updates and notifications during the event. 
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Grim picture for 2016 crop prices

Barry Ward recalls the not-so-distant past when he could relay positive stories and bright agricultural outlooks in the weeks and months ahead. Those talks were just a memory for the speaker at today’s Grain Farmers Symposium.

“This was a lot nicer talk to give a few years ago. That was a period unlike anything we had even seen in our lifetimes,” said Ward, leader of OSU Extension’s Production Business Management program. “There is not much good news in terms of profitability in crop agriculture today. There are a few small positives but not many.”

Ward, from the Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), delivered generally grim numbers in his outlook on land values, rental rates and input budgets..

Land values

In terms of land values, prices are likely heading down.

“When you look at net farm income we are not seeing much good news.

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Trade and technology important in ag discussions

In December, National Corn Growers Association’s Trade Policy and Biotechnology Action Team met in St. Louis to review the organization’s policy in their area of expertise, discuss progress on several ongoing programs and hear from industry representatives about upcoming challenges and opportunities.

Looking at a variety of issues, including how to best support agricultural exports, stress the importance of respecting refuge requirements and facilitate successful communication across the value-chain on their issues, the team will use their in-depth knowledge of the subject matter to develop the nuanced, strategic suggestions needed to help the Corn Board guide NCGA policy effectively.

“It can begin to feel like farmer leaders spend a large amount of time participating in meetings for a variety of agricultural groups during the winter months,” said John Linder, Team Chair, a farmer from Ohio. “Yet, as I have become increasingly involved, I have come to deeply appreciate the breadth and scope of the myriad issues facing farmers today. 

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Ohio Nutrient Management Record Keeper (OnMRK) available

Ohio Nutrient Management Record Keeper (OnMRK) is a computerized recordkeeping system
that sync’s with your smartphone or tablet to create a simple, easy and quick way to record all
of your fertilizer and manure applications from the field. The free app which works on tablets,
iPads and smartphones can be downloaded from the Google Play store for Android devices and
iTunes for the Apple products.

To get started, simply go to the app’s website www.onmrk.com.  After setting up your account, enter your farm and field information. Download and open the app on you smartphone or
tablet and enter your applicator key. All of the data that has been entered on your computer
will now synchronize with your smartphone or tablet. The app features drop‐down menus and
quick entry fields which make it fast and easy to enter the required information.

Click here for Ohio Nutrient Management Record Keeper Instructions

The application information you enter from the field is combined with the GPS Location data
from your smartphone or tablet.

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OSC Board elects leaders

The Ohio Soybean Council (OSC) Board of Trustees elected officers for 2015-2016 during the December board meeting. These executive committee positions include the offices of chairman, vice chairman, treasurer and secretary.

Individuals in these positions are responsible for the implementation of board policies and procedures, as well as carrying out the roles for their respective offices.

Terry McClure of Paulding County was elected chairman. McClure previously served as OSC vice chairman and as a Soy Transportation Coalition board member. In addition to his volunteer leadership position with OSC, McClure is a member of the Board of Directors of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. Previously McClure was president of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, a board member of the Ohio Small Grains Marketing Program, and a board member of the Paulding County Soil and Water Conservation District. He farms soybeans, corn and wheat.

Elected vice chairman after holding the office of treasurer was Steve Reinhard.

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USDA announces funding through International Wheat Partnership Research Program

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the availability of $3.4 million for research projects in support of the new International Wheat Yield Partnership (IWYP) program.

“Wheat is one of the world’s most important staple crops, providing a significant amount of daily calories and protein throughout the world,” said Secretary Vilsack. “By 2050, the demand for wheat as part of a reliable, affordable, and nutritious diet will grow alongside the world population, and continued wheat research will play an important role in ensuring its continued availability.”

Awards for this program will be made through USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), which is authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

The new International Wheat Yield Partnership program seeks to enhance agriculture research that can benefit the global community and support the G20 nations’ Wheat Initiative with the key aims of enhancing the genetic component of wheat yield and developing new wheat varieties that are adaptable to different geographical regions and environmental conditions.

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Ohio small grains checkoff elects leaders

Bryan Bush, a farmer from Edison, was elected chairman of the Ohio Small Grains Checkoff for 2016 during their December meeting at the Ohio Corn & Wheat office in Delaware.

Bush has served on the Ohio Small Grains Checkoff board for 8 years, most recently as vice president. As District 7 Director he represents corn farmers in Belmont, Carroll, Coshocton, Delaware, Franklin, Guernsey, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson, Knox, Licking, Madison, Marion, Morrow, Muskingum, Tuscarawas and Union counties.

Putnam County farmer Mark Hoorman, was elected as vice-chairman. He is in his fourth year of service and previously served as secretary. He represents corn farmers in District 1, which is Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Lucas and Williams counties.

Rachael Vonderhaar, beginning her second year on the board, will serve as secretary. Vonderhaar farms with her family in Preble County. As District 8 Director, she represents corn farmers in Butler, Champaign, Clark, Clinton, Clermont, Darke, Greene, Hamilton, Preble, Miami, Montgomery, and Warren counties.

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Corn Checkoff elects officers, board members

Keith Truckor, a farmer from Metamora, was elected chairman of the Ohio Corn Checkoff for 2016, during their December meeting at the Ohio Corn & Wheat office in Delaware.

Truckor has served on the Ohio Corn Checkoff board for two years, most recently as chair of the domestic demand committee. As District 1 Director he represents corn farmers in Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Lucas and Williams counties.

Putnam County farmer, Dennis Vennekotter, was elected as vice-chairman. He is in his fourth year of service and previously served on the National Corn Growers Association Ethanol Action Team. He represents corn farmers in District 4: Allen, Paulding, Putnam and Van Wert counties.

Doug Longfellow, beginning his fifth year on the board, will serve as secretary. Longfellow farms with his father in Darke County in addition to selling seed. As District 11 Director, he represents corn farmers in Darke, Preble and Montgomery counties.

Gail Lierer of Butler County was elected as Ohio Corn Checkoff treasurer.

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OSC Board of Trustees election results

The Ohio Soybean Council (OSC) recently announced the results of four Board of Trustees district elections during the November board meeting. Elected trustees will serve one three-year term ending in 2018.

The results were as follows:

  • District 2 – Nathan Eckel, Wood County
  • District 5 – Bill Bateson, Hancock County
  • District 9 – Bret Davis, Delaware County
  • District 13 – Amy Sigg Davis, Warren County

No petitions were received from District 1 and that seat remains open.

To download a PDF of this news release, please click here.

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SCI congratulates yield contest winners

Seed Consultants would like to congratulate the winners of our 2015 Yield Contest.

 

2015 Project 300 Corn Yield Contest
RankCustomerVariety

Yield

CityState

1

Terry VissingSCS 1125AMX™

270.74

MarysvilleIN

2

Tim BishopSCS 1085AM™

263.77

QueenstownMD

3

David FisherSCS 10HR43™

253.55

LondonOH
2015 Project 100 Soybean Yield Contest
RankCustomerVariety

Yield

CityState

1

Terry VissingSCS 9385RR™

84.60

MarysvilleIN

2

Tim BishopSCS 9434RR™

82.10

QueenstownMD

3

John NoltSCS 9314RR™

77.23

PlymouthOH
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Dow DuPont merger creating agricultural opportunity and concern

Last week, DuPont and The Dow Chemical Company announced that their boards of directors unanimously approved a definitive agreement under which the companies will combine in an all-stock merger of equals. The combined company will be named DowDuPont. The parties intend to subsequently pursue a separation of DowDuPont into three independent, publicly traded companies through tax-free spin-offs. This would occur as soon as feasible, which is expected to be 18 to 24 months following the closing of the merger, subject to regulatory and board approval.

“This transaction is a game-changer for our industry and reflects the culmination of a vision we have had for more than a decade to bring together these two powerful innovation and material science leaders,” said Andrew N. Liveris, Dow’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Over the last decade our entire industry has experienced tectonic shifts as an evolving world presented complex challenges and opportunities — requiring each company to exercise foresight, agility and focus on execution.

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West Ohio Agronomy Day

The evening portion of the 2016 West Ohio Agronomy Day will be held on Tuesday, January 19th at the Days Inn (SR 47 & I-75) in Sidney.  This program will begin at 5:00 p.m. with a light supper and a marketing update from Trupointe and Cargill personnel.  We will be providing Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification credits (Core and Categories 1, 2, and 6) and Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training for those who already hold a Pesticide Applicator’s License (commercial or private).  These trainings will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. and will be conducted by OSU Extension personnel.

The day-long 2016 West Ohio Agronomy Day will be held on Monday, January 11th at St. Michael’s Hall in Fort Loramie.  A light breakfast will be available starting at 8 a.m. with a marketing update from Trupointe and Cargill at 8:30 a.m.  At 9 a.m. the Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification (Core and Categories 1, 2, and 6) and the Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training for those who already hold a Pesticide Applicator’s License (commercial or private) will begin. 

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Fertility Agronomy Day

Soil fertility is crucial to maximize yield potential when growing crops. Economic and environmental considerations are also a key aspect to fertility management. With the knowledge to do so, farmers can set up fields to maximize profits while minimizing environmental impact.

It all starts with taking a good soil sample and understanding how to use that information in making nutrient application decisions. To better prepare farmers to make these decisions, OSU Extension is offering an Improving Yields through Fertility Agronomy Day. Topics discussed will be: Managing Fertilizer and Lime Input Costs and Water Quality, Soil Sampling, Using Field Buffers in Marginal Areas, Develop a Nutrient Management Plan, and On‐farm research results.

Guest speakers include Dr. Steve Culman, OSU Extension State Fertility Specialist; Greg Labarge and Harold Watters, OSU Extension Agronomic Crops Field Specialists, and Ron Nieman, NRCS District Conservationist.

Participants are asked to bring a soil analysis report so we can help you develop nutrient recommendations for a field.

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Grain price outlook not bright

There are plenty of market factors at play currently and few are positive for increasing corn, soybean and wheat prices. Stagnated demand growth and ample grain supplies from another robust year of production do not leave much opportunity for price improvement, said Matt Roberts, an agricultural economist with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University.

“U.S. prices for corn remain weak on the back of two record harvests,” he said. “Combined with good to excellent yields in major growing nations, global corn and feed grain supplies are quite large.”

Roberts said that growers should continue to expect to see $3.50 to $4 per bushel corn, $8 to $9 soybeans and $5 for wheat until prices are low enough to drive acres from production or demand growth from developing countries like India soaks up the expanded acreage from recent years.

Adding to the problem is significant uncertainty from China, that may be reversing its trend of importing corn.

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Christmas brings many reasons to smile for poinsettia growers

Every job has its ups and downs, but Brett Cuthbert admits that it is hard to get too frustrated when surrounded by thousands of beautiful flowers — especially around the holidays with acres of poinsettias under glass.
“If you’re having a bad day you can walk into the greenhouse and see flowers,” Cuthbert said. “You have to love what you do and being able to see flowers every day certainly isn’t bad.”

Brett is part of the third generation to run Cuthbert Greenhouse, Inc., in Franklin County that specializes in wholesale production of a wide variety of plants. The greenhouse business was started in 1951 to supply starter plants for the family’s 30-acre farm near Groveport. The operation has grown to two locations with 13 acres under glass and a small retail market. They primarily sell to Kroger, Giant Eagle, Kmart and other large retailers in the Columbus area.

“We try to stay within 150-mile radius around Columbus most of the time,” he said.

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