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Field Crop News

The latest news from the Penn State Extension Field and Forage Crops Team.
June 21, 2017

Much of western PA has observed between two and four inches of rain since last week, while much of eastern PA has seen between one-half to one inch of rain during the same period. Because of the wet late Spring/early summer, all of the state has been lifted from abnormally dry or moderate drought status, according to the US Drought Monitor. The best chance for widespread, organized precipitation over the next week will come late this week and into the weekend.

June 21, 2017

As we proceed through the growing season, there are a few issues surrounding weed control and herbicide use. Below are some items to consider.

June 21, 2017

We have heard that many folks are considering replanting corn and/or soybean following heavy slug damage this spring. Particularly for corn, we thought it would be prudent to remind folks to pay attention to the various genetic, insect-resistant traits and seed-applied treatments that are available because all that is offered is not always necessary.

June 21, 2017

Soybean fields in our program continue to put on new growth and appear to be leaving slug damage behind. From the reports we have this week pest populations remain low, bean leaf beetles are active, but nothing concerning yet. Keep in mind that in their vegetative stages soybeans can tolerate up to 25% defoliation without dropping yield, so do not overreact if you find some feeding damage in your fields. For diseases, none have been reported this week. From last week, the field that may have had the beginnings of Septoria brown spot was a false alarm.

June 21, 2017

Save the dates for these summer field day events which will provide on-farm research updates and farmer tips for soil health, grazing, and cover crops.

June 21, 2017

This spring has brought a lot of rain, some of which came down in heavy downpours. The rain is a blessing but can be a curse too.

June 14, 2017

After some unusually warm, muggy days at the beginning of the week, more seasonal temperatures but with unsettle weather will persist through early next week.

Figure 1. Potato leafhopper adult and nymph. Photo Credit: Dr. Art Hower, Penn State University.
June 14, 2017

Potato leafhoppers have arrived in the state and populations in some areas are building rapidly. Growers would be wise to keep an eye out for increasing populations of this pest because once their feeding is evident economic damage has been done.

June 14, 2017

Pigweed species have begun emerging for the season in Pennsylvania, including reports of Palmer amaranth and waterhemp in southeastern Pennsylvania. It is important to scout for these invasive weeds now, and control them before they reach 4 inches tall.

Figure 1. Infected wheat heads.
June 14, 2017

It’s time to see how your disease management approach worked in your wheat and barley. If you had disease, here’s what to do about it.

June 14, 2017

With the warm weather, soybean fields have made some good progress in the last week and have actually put on some growth. We have only a few reports from around the state so far, but they appear to indicate that slug populations are receding as they hide from the heat. Bean leaf beetles and silver-spotted skipper caterpillars have been found, but populations are low. Keep in mind that in their vegetative stages soybeans can tolerate up to 25% defoliation without dropping yield, so do not overreact if you find some feeding damage in your fields. For diseases, one field had what appeared to be the start of a Septoria brown spot population.

June 14, 2017

Reports have come in of emergence problems in soybean fields due to soil crusting. Soil crusting happens due to dispersion of soil particles, reorientation of dispersed particles, drying, and desiccation.

June 14, 2017

As the crops are finally getting going, potassium deficiency is showing up in some fields. Potassium deficiency symptoms occur on the edges of the lower leaves on most plants.

June 14, 2017

Farming for Success 2017 will be held on Thursday, June 29th from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm in Manheim, PA

June 14, 2017

The annual Penn State Extension Agronomic Field Diagnostic Clinic will be held on July 19 and 20, 2017, 9am – 4:30pm at the Penn State Agronomy Research Farm near Rock Springs, PA.

June 7, 2017

Widespread, organized rainfall appears unlikely over the next week, and some sunshine may return to the state, at times, through the weekend.

June 7, 2017

With all of the rainfall that we have been seeing this spring, some of the nitrogen could have been lost to leaching or nitrification. Here’s how you can ensure that your corn crop has enough nitrogen for the season.

June 7, 2017

As for the past five growing seasons, again this year The Pennsylvania Soybean Promotion Board is funding a Soybean Sentinel Plot Program, which is being managed by Penn State Extension and The Department of Entomology at Penn State.