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Field Crop News

The latest news from the Penn State Extension Field and Forage Crops Team.
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.

Figure 1. Slug-damaged corn plants (Photo by Andrew Frankenfield, Penn State Extension).
June 7, 2017

This spring has been different and odd enough in many parts of Pennsylvania that folks are looking for a return to normal, whatever that means. Most calls and other communications that I have received from farmers have had to do with slugs, but other invertebrate pests are also active and I will mention them briefly today.

June 7, 2017

Scab risk is still high across the state. Keep an eye on your wheat heads if they have yet to flower.

June 7, 2017

When coming across an unknown weed, insect or disease in the field, look no further than your smart device. There are a variety of smartphone and tablet apps out there that can assist in identifying weeds, insects and diseases as well as ones that can help select crop protection products or track down pesticide labels, putting important data right at your fingertips.

June 7, 2017

Most often in the mid-Atlantic region, pastures are comprised of cool season perennial forages – including, but not limited to, orchardgrass, bromegrass, fescues, timothy, ryegrass, birdsfoot trefoil, red and white clover. Commonly, these forages thrive in the cooler temperatures and shorter days, causing grazing livestock producers to be faced with slow-growing, unproductive pastures during the hot summer months.

June 7, 2017

Join Penn State Extension for our 2017 Weed Tours on June 28 at the Southeast Research and Extension Center in Lancaster County and on July 11 at the Rock Springs Agronomy Research Farm in Centre County.

May 31, 2017

Below is the weather outlook for this week from Penn State Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences and the Pennsylvania State Climatologist. We will still need some patience and the umbrellas, unfortunately.

May 31, 2017

With many producers faced with the possibility of replant corn, some important decisions may need to be made with regards to controlling the failed crop plants along with the usual weed management considerations. Special consideration must be taken when the corn is herbicide resistant, such as Roundup Ready and Liberty Link hybrids. As usual, the timing of applications is also important.

May 31, 2017

The wet and uncooperative weather has resulted in delayed pre-emergence applications for many producers. Reconsideration of delayed pre-emergence and early post emergence herbicide options may be necessary. The weather effects can result in stressed plants with a greater risk to selection and use of certain herbicides.

May 31, 2017

Herbicide selection in new grass and legume seedings, established hay and pastures, and some guidelines for management based largely on the life cycle of the troublesome weeds in pasture are concerns for some forage producers this season. Some helpful tips for weed management in forages are presented in a simple/straight-forward fashion for your convenience.

May 31, 2017

Last week I covered four important pest species that can cause trouble this time of year. They were black cutworm, cereal leaf beetle, slugs, and armyworm. This week little has changed and I encourage growers to continue to scout for these pest species to determine if they are infesting your fields and if their populations are economically relevant.