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Corn crop struggling in Brazil

Brazil plants two corn crops. The second crop, also known as “safrinha” (“little crop” in Portuguese), has gained more  importance over the last few years, according to Daniele Siqueira from AgRural Commodities Agrícolas in Brazil. And, this year, the safrinha is struggling.

Safrinha corn is planted from January to March, right after soybean harvest, and harvested from June to August, during winter in the Southern Hemisphere. It is possible to do that because many areas in Brazil do not have a real winter. In northern Mato Grosso, the top safrinha corn state, the average temperature in June (equivalent to December in the Northern Hemisphere) is 74 degrees F, Siqueira said.

The safrinha corn is a risky crop. In central Brazil, and especially in Mato Grosso, the risk is not due the temperature, but the moisture. In that region, fall and winter are hot and dry. From mid-May to mid-September there is often virtually no rain in Mato Grosso.… Continue reading

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Early May planting dates better for soybeans

Ohio soybeans planted from May 1 through mid-May resulted in better yields, according to a study by researchers from Ohio State University Extension and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

In the study of 2013 and 2014 planting trials at OARDC’s Western Agricultural Research Station near South Charleston, Ohio, soybean yields decreased by 0.6 bushels per acre per day when planted after mid-May, according to Laura Lindsey, a soybean and small grains specialist with OSU Extension.

Those yield results held true if the soil temperatures were 50 degrees or warmer, Lindsey said. However, soybeans planted too early when soil conditions were not adequate resulted in bean leaf beetle defoliation and frost damage.

Canopy closure beneficial

“There are some exceptions to a yield advantage when planting early, such as if the soils aren’t warm enough or if the fields are too wet,” she said. “In those cases, early planting can be detrimental to soybean yields.… Continue reading

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Identifying wheat growth stages: Feekes Stage 6

For determining the right timing of winter wheat management decisions, identifying the growth stage of wheat plants is critical. For example, knowing how to identify wheat Feekes Stage 6 is important because this is the cutoff timing for certain herbicides ( i.e. 2,4-D and dicamba) and also the point at which rapid development with increased need for nitrogen occurs. Feekes Stage 6 is also the timing when extreme cold temperatures can cause significant damage to wheat plants. Agronomists and wheat experts recommended that spring applications of N are made prior to Feekes Stage 6 (also known as jointing) when the wheat plant begins a period of rapid growth and will utilize more nitrogen. Wheat is currently at or past Feekes 6 in many areas.

How do you identify wheat plants at Feekes Stage 6? The easiest way to tell is to dig up a wheat plant and examine the main stem.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Crop Progress Report – April 18th, 2016

Topsoil and subsoil moisture declined this week due to less precipitation and warmer temperatures over the weekend, though field work was still limited by soggy fields. There were 1.9 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending April 17th. Oat planting progressed behind the 5-year average,but ahead of 2015. Corn planting remains at zero percent planted. Winter wheat maturity is ahead of schedule, and the crop continues to look great. Some damage to fruit trees is anticipated due to the recent drop in temperatures, but the extent is unknown at this time. While planting was very limited this week, growers continued prep work for the season.
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Soybean planting date, rate and row width

Planting date (both too early and too late) can reduce soybean yield potential.  In 2013 and 2014, we conducted a planting date trial at the Western Agricultural Research Station near South Charleston, Ohio.  In both years, soybean yield decreased by 0.6 bu/ac per day when planting after mid-May.  (Note: Soil temperatures were >50°F at each planting date.)  The greatest benefit of planting May 1 to mid-May is canopy closure which increases light interception, improves weed control by shading out weeds, and helps retain soil moisture.

Planting too early (before field conditions are adequate) comes with a risk.  Factors such as damping-off and pressure from bean leaf beetle are concerns to keep in mind, as well as the possibility of a late spring frost.  (Our early May planting date in northeastern Ohio in 2013 was damaged by bean leaf beetle and two frosts that occurred mid-May.)

Before heading to the field, consider the conditions you will be planting into. 

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Ohio Corn & Wheat Leadership Academy applications now being accepted

Ohio men and women with a commitment to the future of Ohio agriculture and an interest in developing their leadership potential are invited to apply for Class 4 of the Ohio Corn & Wheat Leadership Academy. This continuing education program is sponsored by Ohio Corn &Wheat and Seed Consultants, Inc.

“As there becomes fewer farmers, it will continue to become more important to have stronger voices and more farmers engaged,” said Tadd Nicholson, executive director of Ohio Corn & Wheat. “We hope this academy will empower grain farmers to new levels of leadership; whether that’s serving on an agricultural board or engaging in a causal conversation with a consumer who has an agricultural question.”

The Ohio Corn & Wheat Leadership Academy is a two-session statewide leadership development program created to educate and encourage Ohio grain producers to become more involved with Ohio Corn & Wheat and our grassroots programs. These programs will feature development of leadership, business and communication skills, which will result in a professional competitive edge for our organizations and the farmers who participate.… Continue reading

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Seed treatments can be important in a productive soybean crop

Last year was more proof for Andy Rodefer of the value in placing a high priority on getting soybeans off to a good start.

“We think you should be getting beans out there just as early as corn, if not earlier. On most occasions beans can take a lot of stress. Sometimes they don’t always look good but they can still come back after a lot of cold, tough weather and yield really well,” said Rodefer, who farms in Preble County. “In a lot of years planting early helps, but you have to protect the seed and roots as the plant comes out of the ground. In our area we hope we don’t have the rainfall like we did last year and that we get a good start for 2016.”

And Rodefer hopes that is the case not only for his farm, but also the numerous area farms he works with as a Syngenta seed dealer and a soybean seed treatment facility owner.… Continue reading

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Videos demonstrate wheat growth stages

With much of the winter wheat crop across Ohio approaching critical growth stages for crucial management decision-making, a wheat expert from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University offers a series of YouTube videos that demonstrate how growers can correctly identify their crops’ various growth stages.

The series is designed as a tool to help growers understand the various stages of wheat growth and to know what management strategies can be used during each growth stage, said Pierce Paul, an Ohio State University Extension wheat researcher.

The videos, which begin with wheat at Feekes Growth Stage 6, show the key growth stages of wheat throughout the growing season, said Paul, who is also a plant pathologist with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Assessing risk

Growers need to know how to judge wheat’s growth stages so they can make appropriate decisions on when to apply nitrogen and herbicides and whether they will need to apply a fungicide, Paul said.… Continue reading

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New Ohio research specialist for grape and wine production

Three recently filled positions in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University are intended to advance research supporting Ohio’s rapidly expanding wine industry.

Andrew Kirk has been hired as research specialist and manager of the Ashtabula Agricultural Research Station, a 25-acre location near the Lake Erie shoreline dedicated to comprehensive wine-grape research and education.

The station, located in Kingsville, is one of eight research farms throughout the state managed by the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Kirk has a master’s degree in horticulture from Lincoln University in New Zealand (2016) and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Ohio State (2011). At Lincoln University, he specialized in viticulture and enology and also gained experience in the management of research vineyards. Previously, he was an apprentice at Markko Vineyard in Conneaut, not far from the research station, from 2011-12.

“The research specialist position is a new venture for managing OARDC’s Ashtabula Agricultural Research Station,” said Ken Scaife, assistant to the OARDC director for field operations.… Continue reading

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Lower demand pushes prices lower

With corn overall demand estimates lowered by 24 million bushels and U.S. corn ending stocks raised by 25 million bushels, farmers can expect about slightly less per bushel according U.S. Department of Agriculture reports released today. While production estimates were unchanged from March and the report indicates increased demand for ethanol, those gains are more than offset by a major increase in feed and residual demand.
“U.S. corn farmers have indicated their intention to grow another bountiful crop in 2016 and, if the weather proves favorable, we may see a large corn supply after harvest,” said National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, a farmer from Maryland.  “At NCGA, we work to apply the same expertise and and dedication shown by our members to our efforts to create and grow demand for our crop. America’s farmers sustainably produce a corn crop that can feed and fuel the world. Working together, we can create the opportunities necessary to maximize the potential of this great resource and build a solid future for our farm families as well.”
Ending stocks are now expected to reach 1.86 billion bushels, their highest level since 2005.
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Fruit growers trying to dodge frost damage

While the cold temperatures had many Ohioans shivering this last weekend, it had tree fruit growers quaking in their boots.

The early warm-up in March followed by the plummeting temperatures in April generated plenty of concern about early blossoms being killed and jeopardizing a significant portion of the state’s apple and other fruit crops. Orchards further south had the most reason for concern from the recent cold snap as their trees were the furthest along in terms of blossom development.

The crew at Hirsch Fruit Farm in Ross County was nervously checking trees on Monday to see how bad the damage was from the frigid weekend temperatures.

“It is surprising that we have some live buds out there considering how cold it was and has been. That’s great,” said Steve Hirsch, of Hirsch Fruit Farm near Chillicothe. “The apples were all over the board. Some were in full bloom and some were not even pink yet.… Continue reading

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ARC County location changes due April 15

Growers enrolled in the Agriculture Risk Coverage program and whose farms cross county boundaries, or are located in a county other than their Farm Service Agency (FSA) office, have until April 15 to request a recalculation of their 2014 and 2015 benefits based on the farm’s physical location. Eligible farmers must contact their local FSA office to make this change.
FSA approved this one-time exception due to the late passage of the 2014 farm bill and resulting reforms to USDA risk management programs. This provision only applies to a small fraction of farm operators, and those who are affected were contacted by FSA earlier this year.
For 2016 and future years, farmers will continue to have the flexibility to request farm record changes, including moving records to another servicing county office or dividing their farm, through their county FSA office no later than August 1 of each year.
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Ohio’s Crop Progress Report – April 11th, 2016

Farmers were kept out of their fields this week due to continued precipitation and cold temperatures.. There were 0.6 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending April 3rd. Some areas saw up to 3 inches of snow during the weekend, continuing the pattern of cold temperatures. The percentage of the State with surplus topsoil and subsoil moisture continued to climb. Winter wheat continues to look excellent despite the temperatures.

Read the full report here, courtesy of Brodbeck Seed.… Continue reading

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Ohio Small Grains Marketing Program seeks election to board for three districts

Public Notice of Nomination and Election

Pursuant to Section 924.07 of the Ohio Revised Code, David T. Daniels, Director, Ohio Department of Agriculture will conduct an election of the Ohio Small Grains Marketing Program Board in July 2016.

The Ohio Small Grains Marketing Program is designed to increase the opportunities for small grains producers. The purpose of this program is to provide funds to permit small grains producers to develop, implement, and participate in market development and promotion, research and educational programs.

The election to the Board will include these three districts:

District 4: Paulding, Putnam, Van Wert counties

District 5: Hancock, Hardin, Wyandot counties

District 6: Allen, Auglaize, Logan, Mercer, Shelby counties.

The Nomination Procedure is as follows

  • Nominating petitions may be obtained from David T. Daniels, Director Ohio Department of Agriculture Legal Section 8995 E Main Street Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068-3399 Telephone 1-800-282-1955 or 614-728-6390.
  • Petitions require at least twenty-five (25) valid signatures from small grains producers who reside within the district in which the candidate seeks election.
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NACHURS celebrating 70 years

Built on quality, integrity, and innovation, we pioneered liquid fertilizer – first in the United States in 1946 and later in Canada in 1973 – formulated to meet the nutritional demands of crops and growing conditions on both sides of the border. We will be celebrating our Ohio roots today, Friday, April 8, 2016.

Our two founding companies, The Na-Churs Plant Food Company and Alpine Plant Foods Corporation, captivated growers’ attention and revolutionized farming practices by developing seed-safe, liquid phosphate starters that kick-start strong, early root growth and maximize crop yields. In 1998, The Na-Churs Plant Food Company acquired Alpine Plant Foods Corp. and formed Nachurs Alpine Solutions.

Today, an ever-increasing number of farmers in every state and province rely on our in-furrow fertilizer starters, fertigation products, foliar nutrition, and micronutrients on nearly every row crop, fruits, and vegetables. These are just a few reasons why NACHURS is “Always the Innovator, Never the Imitator”.… Continue reading

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Carbon-neutral crop production featured in college program

The next time you hear about carbon neutrality, think of food security and sustainable agriculture solutions. With 795 million people in the world who do not get enough food to lead healthy, active lives, you will hear about this issue more often.
NCGA Director of Soil Health and Sustainability Dr. Nick Goeser, who also directs the Soil Health Partnership, recently participated in a highly innovative, hands-on design lab for university students to create solutions to the emerging challenge of a carbon neutral food supply. Berkeley Nourishing 9 Billion Solution Lab is at the center of hosting events on college campuses to focus on food security and sustainable agricultural solutions. The event took place at Washington University in St. Louis.
Worldwide, 17 million children suffer from severe malnutrition and deadly conditions left untreated. With the world population growing from 7 billion to 9 billion people by 2050, the importance of surfacing solutions becomes apparent.
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No-Till Spring Field Day draws big numbers with soil health message

As has become the norm for the event, those curious about no-till and cover crops made the pilgrimage and packed the farm shop on David Brandt’s Fairfield County farm yesterday.

Stories of no-till and cover crop successes and failures were swapped over lunch and dedication levels to building soil health were reinvigorated by the compelling line-up of speakers, and, of course, the internationally known host of the 2016 Ohio No-Till Council Spring Field Day. License plates on the trucks parked in the field were from all over the country and from Canada, with a few folks making the trip from Toronto — all on an early spring day when there were probably several other things that could have been addressed on their farms back home. Nonetheless, the more-people-than-seats crowd was eager to learn and attentive.

Ray Archuleta, the dynamic Natural Resource Conservation Service soil health specialist, led off the program with several different visual demonstrations showing the powerful combination of no-till and cover crops.… Continue reading

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Cold weather and wheat injury

Cool weekend temperatures have prompted some concern about possible injury to the wheat crop.

The effect of cold weather depends on the wheat growth stage. Maximum resistance to cold weather occurs in December-February. As wheat greens-up, the plant becomes less tolerant of freezing temperatures. At Feekes 6 growth stage aka “jointing” temperatures of ≤24°F for at least two hours may be injurious. Currently, in Ohio, most wheat is at Feekes 5 (green-up), so injury should be minimal.

Currently, we are in the process of evaluating freeze tolerance of winter wheat grown in Ohio. We collected wheat samples from Pickaway County on March 30 when plants were at Feekes 5 growth stage. Plants were put into a freeze chamber and temperature lowered to 27°, 21°, 14°, and 5°F. Very little injury has been observed between 14-27°F. At 5°F, wheat leaves wilted and had a dark purple-green water-soaked look 24 hours later. We plan on re-running this study at Feekes 6 growth stage.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Crop Progress Report – April 5th, 2016

Most of the State saw heavy precipitation this week, which was welcomed as it replenished soil moisture. There were 1.3 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending April 3rd. Some growers top-dressed wheat, though the majority were holding off due to saturated fields. Some were also applying fertilizer and spraying, though mostly producers focused on prep activities as the rain prevented most fieldwork. Among fruit growers, there were some worries about damage to the peach crop due to snow and freezing.

See the full report hereContinue reading

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Farmers, consultants needed for major initiative to update fertilizer guidelines

It’s been 20 years since agronomists have developed fertilizer recommendations in Ohio.

But now, Ohio State University Extension is embarking on a major initiative to determine the optimal rates of fertilization on the state’s major crops. The goal is to not only maximize farm profitability, but also contribute to improved nutrient management and water quality in the state.

The Ohio State University On-farm Fertilizer Trials project plans to gather data from hundreds of farms statewide over the next two to three years, said Steve Culman, soil fertility specialist with the university’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and researcher with the college’s Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.


Multiple trials

Similar projects are being conducted in Indiana and Michigan, and the results will replace the current tri-state fertilizer recommendations, he said.

In Ohio, farmers will be paid up to $500 for participating, and crop consultants who join the effort will be paid $1,000 to $1,500 for each trial they manage, Culman said.… Continue reading

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