WHEAT DISEASE UPDATE
Wheat heads are beginning to emerge or emerged over the weekend in some locations across the state. Early-planted fields and early-maturing varieties will likely reach anthesis (flowering) this week, but most of the crop will likely reach this critical growth stage during next week (the week of May 27). The next 7 to 10 days will be very important for making decisions regarding fungicide application for scab and Stagonospora control, and once pollination occurs, the next several weeks will be critical for grain-fill. The forecast is for temperatures in the upper 80s early in the week, cooling down to mid-60s and lower-70s over the weekend and early next week. Cool temperatures during the weeks after flowering will make for excellent grain-fill as well as reduce the risk for disease development.
ALFALFA PEST LOOKOUT
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Indiana has had enough warm, spring days for alfalfa growers to start seeing alfalfa weevil emerging in their fields. So producers should be scouting for the pest now instead of waiting to see obvious damage before doing anything about it, a Purdue Extension entomologist says.
The early season pest is active in both adult and larval forms in the spring, and heavy infestations can be destructive to the alfalfa crop.
In early spring, alfalfa weevil larvae hatch from eggs deposited in the plant stems and begin feeding within the folding leaves at the growing tips, Christian Krupke said. A heavy infestation of larvae can consume enough foliage that an entire field might take on a grayish appearance.
"When you can see the damage from the road and the field starts to look gray, you've missed the opportunity to treat the field with an insecticide.
TOP FARMER CROP WORKSHOP
We are busy preparing for the 46th Top Farmer Crop Workshop. The workshop again promises to help leading farmers understand how to manage their businesses and the technology necessary to thrive in today’s agricultural environment. The list of speakers will be informative, practical and engaging. Make plans to join us July 8-10, 2013.
AG ECONOMIST: SUMMER GAS TO BE CHEAPER THAN LAST YEAR
A Purdue University agricultural economist says gas prices will likely be slightly lower this summer compared to last year. Wally Tyner says drivers in the Midwest can expect to pay between $3.50 and $3.90 per gallon over the next few months. He says increased production and lower demand, because of more fuel-efficient cars, are driving the decrease
ALERT! THE WINDOW TO RESPOND TO THE CENSUS OF AGRICULTURE IS ALMOST CLOSED!
There are only a few weeks left to complete and return the 2012 Census of Agriculture. Because time is running out, NASS may contact you or farmers in your area by phone or in person to collect information for the Census. Help ensure you and your industry have the most complete set of agricultural statistics available for your country and county. For more information or for help filling out your Census form, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov or call (888) 424-7828.
Vegetable, fruit, and other sensitive crops growers can register their production areas on http://www.driftwatch.org to let commercial applicators know where fields are. This helps reduce drift and accidental application to sensitive crops.
EMERALD ASH BORERS
If you have an ash tree in your yard that you consider valuable you might consider treating for emerald ash borers as a preventative. Although Decatur County is not on the map, many of the counties around us are. You can get information online or in the Extension Office. This is the time to do it.
STATEWIDE TOUR SERIES OFFERS UP-CLOSE LOOK AT SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE IN OHIO
June 21: Fulton County Sustainable Agriculture tour
July 12: Fairfield County Managed Grazing and Direct Marketing Meats
Aug. 15: Hops Production
Aug 17: Urban Community Garden
Sept. 5: Organic and Sustainable Agriculture Field Day
The series is a unique opportunity for growers and other interested people to experience what sustainable agriculture is all about directly from farmers, said Mike Hogan, an Ohio State University Extension educator who is also the coordinator of Ohio State's Sustainable Agriculture Team.
Complete details and a list of all 26 tours in the series can be downloaded at http://www.oeffa.org/pdfs/farmtour2013.pdf#page=1.
LATE PLANTING SEASON CAN LEAD TO INCREASED HERBICIDE DRIFT PROBLEMS
This year is shaping up to be a late planting year for row crops (corn and soybeans). April was the second wettest month on record with a statewide rainfall average of over 6 inches.
That means farmers have not been able to get into the fields to till or apply burn-down herbicides in no-till. It has also been a late year for fruit crops so development has been delayed, but with the recent spell of warm weather, crops are growing quickly. Apples are in bloom and grapes, brambles, and blueberries are past bud break across the state. This is setting up a scenario where much of the herbicide applied to no-till crops will go on when sensitive crops such as grapes have started growing and are more prone to damage. In a “normal” year, much of the burn-down herbicide, which often contains glyphosate and the volatile herbicides 2,4-D or dicamba, is applied before grapes bud out, so they are not sensitive. But this year will be one of those where there is significant potential for off-target damage. If your vineyard is close to row crops, especially no-till, you might want to talk to the farmers around you to make them aware of the situation. Direct them to the Driftwatch website (www.driftwatech.org). Hopefully your vineyard is registered. If not, register it now. Also direct them to the publication “Watch Out for Grapes” (DW-10) (http://www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/HO/DW-10-W.pdf), or print off a copy to give them. This is definitely a case where “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”.(Bordelon)
GROWING GREAT TOMATOES
A Library /Purdue Extension presentation will be given on Monday, June 24th at 6PM at the Decatur County Library. Please RSVP the Decatur County Office at 812/663-8388.
LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS SHOULD WATCH FOR, CONTROL POISON HEMLOCK
While poison hemlock isn’t likely to be as prominent a problem this year as it was in last year’s drought-stressed pastures, Purdue Extension specialists sill encourage livestock producers to be on the lookout for the toxic plant.
Poison hemlock is often found along roadsides, edges of cultivated fields, stream banks and pasture fencerows. It most defining characteristics are the purple spots or blotches on the plant’s hairless, ridged stems. If eaten, all parts of the plant can be fatally toxic to cattle, horses, swine, sheep and goats.
“If there is adequate pasture growth, poison hemlock isn’t as big a deal because animals typically won’t eat it unless it’s all they have, but livestock producers still need to be on the lookout for it and to think about how to control it,” said Ron Lemenager, Purdue Extension beef specialist. “They also need to be especially cautious when making hay.”
Control methods are most effective when applied at an early plant growth stage, said Travis Legleiter, Purdue Extension weed scientist.
“Farmers need to look for it before it’s bolted, or flowered, when it’s low-growing,” he said. Poison hemlock has a two-year life cycle and herbicides work best when applied early in the first year of growth, when plants are newly emerged.
The most common herbicides used to control the weed in pastures are growth regulators, such as 2,4-D, dicamba or a combination of 2,4-D and tryclopyr, said Bill Johnson, Purdue Extension weed scientist.
YARDS (Laws, Woody Ornamentals, and Fruits)
Prune early spring-flowering trees and shrubs after flowers fade.
Plant balled-and-burlapped or container nursery stock, and water thoroughly.
Remove and destroy overwintering bagworms from landscape trees and shrubs.
Follow a spray schedule to keep home-orchard crops pest free. While trees are in bloom, use fungicide sprays without insecticide to avoid injury to bees. Follow label directions. More information is available in Purdue Extension Publication ID-146 Controlling Pests in the Home Fruit Planting http://mdc.itap.purdue.edu/item.asp?itemID=20518
Thin fruits of apple trees, if needed, about three weeks after petal fall. Apples should be about 8 inches apart.
Apply fungicides to roses to control diseases such as black spot.
Purdue turf experts recommend that if you are going to fertilize your lawn in May, Apply three-fourths to 1 pound N/1,000 square foot with a product that contains 50 percent or more slow-release fertilizer. Try to schedule the application prior to a rain or irrigate following application to move the fertilizers off the leaf blade.
Many homeowners are seeing maples that have black tar balls or spots on the leaves. This is due to the wet May weather conditions causing a fungus to form. This can be unsightly but will not kill the tree.
For more information about this newsletter please contact:
AG, Natural Resources, ECD
Dan can be contacted at:
545 S CR 200 W
Greensburg IN 47240