Field Crop News
Sorting through some of the differences between soil health tests can be challenging. Penn State offers a Soil Quality Assessment Worksheet that may be beneficial.
Keep an eye out for some leaf diseases in your wheat crop.
The allium leafminer (also known as the onion leafminer) has recently been detected and confirmed from infested leeks and onions in Lancaster County. This is the first confirmed infestation in the Western Hemisphere. Your assistance is needed for monitoring and controlling this new invasive species.
A very mild March has preceded a rather cold start to April. While there will be some swings in temperatures for the upcoming week, it will remain unseasonably cold for much of the next seven days. Most of the state has experienced relatively dry conditions over the past two to four weeks, but some much-needed rain will arrive to parts of the region over the next couple of days.
Prior to this week’s cool weather, a number of farmers and applicators are thinking or even starting to apply burndown herbicides. Remember that all vegetation should be actively growing and capable of intercepting the herbicide spray (e.g. not covered with crop residue). Air temperature before, during, and after application can influence control with burndown.
Many winter grains in southern PA are currently in a susceptible growth stage and we have now had two nights of hard freezes that could impact their yield potential. What does that mean?
Alfalfa fields have been growing well across most of Pennsylvania. We have experienced a few nights in the twenties or lower in the past week. Low temperatures, whether visible frost is present or not, may affect the growth of both established forage plants, as well as newly emerged seedlings.
The 2015 North American Manure Expo, which was co-hosted by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, is being recognized with the Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence, Pennsylvania's "highest honor bestowed upon businesses or organizations for environmental performance and innovation."
Again this spring, Penn State Extension will be monitoring arriving populations of black cutworm moths. We will let folks know via this newsletter the status of arriving populations and when they should scout their fields for damage.
Much of Pennsylvania has soil conditions that are drier than average for this time of year. If you have cover crops that you intend to plant into prior to burning down(planting green) you should consider the amount of soil moisture they are using, especially if the spring continues to be dry.
Before you pull out the subsoiler, take a shovel and check soil aggregation and porosity.
REAP (Resource Enhancement and Protection) program tax credits for farmers who want to implement new best management practices on their farms.
After what has been on pace to be a top 10 warmest March statewide, a more wintry pattern will be in place for the beginning of April.
Marketing seems to be more of a focus at this time of year, just as some positive price movement occurs and the industry awaits official USDA planting projection reporting the end of March. Let’s not be caught off guard as we seek to secure the economic viability of our farm.
The presence of this mite as a significant factor of timothy losses has been reported in Lancaster, Lebanon, Dauphin, and York counties over the past 2 years; however, this pest has most likely been present for a longer period of time but gone unnoticed. Some yield loss estimates range from 30-70%.
As you drove over your small grains to fertilize and apply herbicide this spring, you may have taken notice of some winter kill, possible snow mold patches and powdery mildew. While our long warm fall set us up for these issues, our dry warm spring is helping to fight against them.
How to use the PA Pest Information Platform for Extension and Education (PA PIPE) to keep track of soil temperature, heat units, and potential pests in your area. Identification, scouting, and control of alfalfa weevil is also discussed.
Managing when and where livestock graze can have lasting positive effects on pasture productivity.