Agronomy Talk

12

Apr

2017

Agronomy Update

April Planting Updates

Author: Jon Skinner

With planting just days away, now is a great time to look over your final planting details to ensure you are setting yourself up for maximum yield potential with the upcoming crop. Becks Practical Farm Research (PFR)® continues to provide us with unbiased guidelines and insights to help maximize yield and return on investment (ROI) on every acre.

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12

Apr

2017

Agronomy Update

Burndown Options, Planting Behind Anhydrous Ammonia and Black Cutworm

Author: Luke Schulte

As we prepare for planting, there are a number of things to keep in mind. From burndown to weed and pest control, there are factors to consider that will ultimately affect the season ahead.  

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6

Mar

2017

Agronomy Update

Early Burndown Options

Author: Austin Scott

God willing, planters will be rolling through fields within the next four to five weeks. If you haven’t already, now is the time to start thinking about burndown options. We’ve had a very mild winter (as you can tell by the size of our wheat!) and many winter annuals have grown much larger than usual. This should be taken into consideration when thinking about those hard-to-control winter weeds like Italian ryegrass and marestail. 

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27

Feb

2017

Agronomy Update

Large Seed and Central Fill Planter Setting Recommendations

Author: Denny Cobb

Low commodity prices have drastically reduced margins this year and the best way to make a profit will be to utilize all of your tools to their fullest potential. That means making sure your planter is ready for the field before its time to plant.

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6

Feb

2017

Agronomy Update

Cover Crops: Termination Timing and Weed Suppression

Author: Austin Scott

Cover crop acres have been steadily on the rise for the last few years. According to a recent survey by the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Department, farmers in the U.S. increased their cover crop acres by 147 percent from 2014 to 2016. But, this rapid adoption did not come without growing pains. Many farmers have struggled with terminating their cover crops on time and, in many cases, the cover crop persisted into the growing season and actually became detrimental to yield. 

Cover crop acres have been steadily on the rise for the last few years. According to a recent survey by the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Department, farmers in the U.S. increased their cover crop acres by 147 percent from 2014 to 2016. But, this rapid adoption did not arise without growing pains. Many farmers have struggled with terminating their cover crops on time and, in many cases, the cover crop persisted into the growing season and actually became detrimental to yield. How and when you should kill your cover crop will be dependent on the cash crop you’re planting as well as the species and growth stage of your cover crop.

Many farmers are using cereal crops (cereal rye, wheat, etc.) as a part of their mixture because of their relatively low cost and ability to produce biomass above and below ground. Soybeans have a greater ability to overcome cereal competition early in the year so termination can be delayed up to 7 to 14 days after planting. Corn lacks the early season “grit” that soybeans have and thus, the cereal cover should be terminated at least 14 days ahead of planting. University of Tennessee Weed Scientists Dr. Garret Montgomery and Dr. Larry Steckel have seen a negative impact on corn stands and early season vigor when a standalone cereal cover crop was used. However, when a legume (vetch) was introduced to the mix, a significant difference in vigor was seen (Figure 1).
 

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3

Feb

2017

Agronomy Update

2017 Wheat Updates

Author: David Hughes

I’ve recently had the opportunity to scout a few wheat fields and I wanted to share with you a few updates. 

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3

Feb

2017

Agronomy Update

Wheat Updates and Nitrogen Managment

I’ve received a few calls over the past few weeks from wheat farmers inquiring whether or not their wheat fields were starting to break dormancy. From what I’ve seen, the answer is yes. Many wheat fields have in fact “greened up” over the last couple of weeks. With temperatures reaching the mid-60s on January 21 and 22, and nighttime temperatures remaining above freezing until around January 26, a definite change has taken place across southern Illinois wheat fields.

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