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Field Crop News

The latest news from the Penn State Extension Field and Forage Crops Team.
July 26, 2017

Humidity will be on the uptick as showers and thunderstorms approach Pennsylvania for friday.

Figure 1. Western bean cutworm egg mass on upper leaves of vegetative stage corn (Photo by Nicole Carutis, Penn State Extension)
July 26, 2017

Western Bean Cutworm pest pressure may apparently be higher than in previous years. Producers encouraged to be on the lookout for caterpillars and egg masses and consider the presence and type of Bt corn.

July 26, 2017

Horses, cattle, sheep, and goats will generally avoid poisonous plants. Grazing animals seem to have an innate sense of which plants are okay to consume and which to avoid. However, in pastures which have become overgrazed or brown from drought they will be more apt to sample less palatable species including poisonous broadleaves.

July 26, 2017

More reports this week from across the state that uniformly indicate low pest populations in the soybean fields we are scouting.

July 19, 2017

Rather warm and humid conditions will persist through early next week. More unsettled weather will arrive by later Thursday into Friday of this week.

July 19, 2017

Corn and soybeans have survived a rough spring with challenging weather and pest concerns but yield prospects have been improving during the last two weeks as we approached silking. Observations made during this time can help to determine stand health and predict silage harvest dates.

Figure 1 Penn State SEAREC- 2014 Corn Response to Fungicide Applications- D.G. Voight and A. Collins.
July 19, 2017

Under certain conditions, applying a fungicide to corn may provide an economic return. A look at few key criteria will help in determining whether to apply fungicides or wait things out.

Soybean showing cupped and crinkled leaves on July 17 at our Rock Springs Agronomy Farm.
July 19, 2017

Concerns for plant growth regulator off-target crop injury are on the rise. What will we experience here in the Mid-Atlantic this summer?

 Figure 1. Corn leaf aphid. Photo by Del Voight, Penn State Extension, Lebanon County.
July 19, 2017

Corn Aphids have become a recent problem on some farms in Pennsylvania and are the result of imbalances of natural predators. Fortunately, through scouting and the use of economic thresholds this problem can be avoided.

July 19, 2017

We have plenty of reports this week from across the state that indicate low pest populations in the soybean fields we are scouting and the same conditions likely apply in most soybean fields around the state. For most of the issues we have seen, there appears to be little economic return in applying insecticides at this time.

July 12, 2017

Unsettled weather with rather uncomfortable humidity levels will persist through the remainder of the week

July 12, 2017

We have heard about claims of 2,4-D injury to commercial grapevines in Pennsylvania, potentially stemming from applications in nearby field crops.

July 12, 2017

As your canopies close and humidity levels rise, you can bet the fungi that cause crop diseases are getting happy. Scouting right now is going to be your best bet for making good fungicide decisions for your fields.

July 12, 2017

Corn and soybeans have survived a rough spring with weather and pest concerns, but weather and yield prospects have been improving during the last two weeks.

July 12, 2017

Most soybean fields appear to be growing well and are starting to experience some minor defoliation. Our reports from this week identify bean leaf beetles, Japanese beetles, and grasshoppers as the primary culprits. Remember that 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, reports of Septoria brown spot and frogeye leaf spot appeared this week, but populations seem low.

July 12, 2017

Commercial and private pesticide applicators looking to obtain PA pesticide continuing education credits can now register for the Agronomic Pesticide Applicator’s School at Rock Springs on August 30th, 2017.

July 12, 2017

Planting green is a practice where growers delay cover crop termination until cash crop planting. Instead of killing the cover crop 1-2 weeks ahead of cash crop planting, the cover is allowed to grow longer into the spring, which can extend soil conservation and health benefits provided by the cover crop.