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Published on Tuesday, August 23, 2016
From too much moisture, to not enough rain in the month of June, and weeks of intense heat, followed by cooler temperatures over the 4th of July, we’ve seen it all in eastern Iowa this year. While we are nearing the finish line, stay sharp and continue scouting. Nothing is more disheartening than to go all year with a robust crop only to have it end up in the dirt right before harvest. As you scout for foliar diseases, begin examining stalk strength as well.
The risk of stalk rot is higher for fields that have significant foliar disease, so the good news is you can work efficiently by checking both at the same time. If your fields are devoid of foliar disease, refer to the hybrid stalk strength rating for the best place to begin scouting. Try to test 100 plants over four to five locations per field. You can push stalks to the next row to see if they lodge or pinch them about 8 in. above the ground to evaluate stalk strength. If these tests result in less than ideal standability, take a closer took to see if you can confirm a stalk rot. If more than one in 10 plants lodge during the push test or have a deteriorating stalk, be sure to schedule those fields for an early harvest.
Author: Greg Shepherd
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