From the Field Updates

Andy Beck from the field report

We have a record amount of prevent plant acres here in the far east. There were really three windows of planting in our area – a few days at the end of April, a couple days mid-May and on into June.

Corn planted early is denting. The later planted corn will need 30 to 45 days to mature. Hopefully we can get a warm September and first half of October to get this crop mature. Cases of disease in the area have been relatively low. We are starting to see some of the early planted corn running out of N do to all the rain after application. There have been some challenges with this corn crop, although most of the corn in the area does look good.

It looks like we could sneak out an average crop of soybeans in our area. No real aphid or Japanese beetle pressure to speak of around here. Weed pressure is a huge concern. Waterhemp and Marestail are running rampant. With the approval of Enlist trait there will be some more options for next year. E3 beans will be tolerant to Roundup, Liberty and Enlist. Enlist is a new less volatile version of 2-4-D. Talk to your Landmark agronomist for more information on this new technology.

The wheat harvest is all wrapped up. Yields were down for most farmers ranging anywhere from 55 to 90 Bu/ac. The best yields were seen with split application of nitrogen where we spread urea and AMS early in March, then came back in late April with a 28% and herbicide application. The better wheat also had a fungicide pass for head scab at Feekes 10.5.1., which is beginning to flower. Although grain yields were down, straw yields were seen as being very good!

Cover crops have been a big topic here with all the prevent plant acres. The question we hear all the time is “What should I plant?”.  Well you must decide what your next cash crop is and your goals for that cover crop. There are many options out there and those options may be different for everybody but remember something is better than nothing! Talk with your Landmark agronomist to sort through all the options.

st growers had struggles with alfalfa management.  Right out of the gate, many established fields were affected by winter kill.  Because alfalfa prices were high and feed inventories were low due to 2018, growers elected to keep sub-standard alfalfa into 2019. Seeding were planted late into saturated soils.  These plantings really struggled with disease pressure.  It can be hard to evaluate alfalfa varieties for diseases, because most growers only plant one or two on their farm.  Work with a trusted agronomist to identify alfalfa disease and put a plan into place to protect your plants. A few new alfalfa varieties have recently been released with new levels of disease resistance to Fusarium, Verticillium, Anthracnose, Aphanomyces races 1,2,3, and now even 5.  Along with planting a disease resistant plant, consider using a fungicide on your alfalfa stands.  Along with additional yield, fungicides can help extend the life of your alfalfa stands, by limiting diseases like crown rot from getting into your plants.

In my 18 years of experience, 2019 had the highest level of leafhoppers in our area. Most growers are scouting and treating fields over thresholds.  While making this pass, consider other products to enhance yields.  Micronutrients, fungicides and other foliar fertilizers can enhance yields and increase RFV.  While alfalfa prices are high, take advantage of higher ROI.