Ridgetown Ag Business Meeting Minutes – June 19, 2012

Ridgetown Ag Business Meeting Minutes (June 19, 2012)

Included: Crop conditions, armyworm, Yellow corn, SCN, aphids, soybean herbicide injury and more.

NOTE: The tour of the Huron Research Station is available next Tuesday, June 26th. This was the last spring meeting for Ridgetown.  A September meeting is planned either at Lynn’s Restaurant or at the Ridgetown Campus.  Details will be provided later this summer.

Synopsis: Rainfall continues sporadic, from a couple tens in north Essex to a reported 6” in Inwood. Most areas report ½ to 1”.  Isolated pockets of hail reported with minor damage.  Armyworm has been a hot topic with 30 to 50% of wheat and hay fields sprayed or harvested early. Sulphur deficiency on corn and alfalfa have been confirmed Bonnie Ball’s article in fieldcropnews.ca. Glyphosate resistant fleabane (2012 Testing Results for Herbicide Resistant Weeds – M. Cowbrough) has been confirmed across a large part of this region, often in fields where growers have been good stewards.  Wheat harvest will begin in Essex in late June with the majority going first week of July.  Questions continue around double crop soybeans.  Soybean cyst nematode “cysts” are starting to be seen on the roots so begin scouting.  Weeds of the year include lambs-quarter, curled dock, nutsedge, and annual grasses.

Corn: Corn looks excellent! A few uneven or variable stands attributed to soil conditions and soil temperatures.  Rapid growth symptoms have disappeared.   Some sulphur deficiency in corn and seed corn has been confirmed on sandy soils and eroded knolls.  A lot of fungicide applied with the final herbicide application (V6 to V8).  It is important to leave some strips with no fungicide to assess yield differences!  Yield expectations are high.

Soybeans:  Soybeans look good with plant stand issues related to moisture and planting depth: they are excellent if seed was planted deep enough to find moisture.  A few replants.

Metribuzin damage is common in and around London area.  Significant rainfall can cause herbicide burn from soil uptake or surface splash.  Fields will outgrow this damage quickly and it will not impact yield.  Lots of re-spraying going on right now.  Weeds are past the “pullback” of postemergent herbicides.  Fields are greening up again after the lag phase.  Slug damage is evident in some no-till fields.

 Wheat: Fungicide treated vs untreated cereal performance trials show obvious differences in appearance.  A few wheat fields in Essex may see a late June harvest with the majority going first week of July.  Fusarium head blight incidence appears low to trace in most areas. Foliar leaf diseases are field and area specific, with mostly low levels.  Wheat sawfly damage reported in the area: look for clipped heads and piles of stalk.

Sugarbeets and tomatoes look good and are well ahead of normal development.  Sugarbeet harvest is anticipated at 5 million tonnes, vs a normal crop at 4.3 million.  Processing plants will open August 15th with a $100/tonne premium for early harvested beets.  This premium will offset lower yields and sugar content in early harvested beets.  Early pea harvest is yielding 2.5 to 5 tonnes/acre with some problem fields around 1 tonne.  Majority have gone into double crop soybeans immediately after harvest.

Armyworm Armyworm articleSeveral moth flights have resulted in a range of sizes and extended feeding activity.  Marching into corn fields has required some spraying of corn. Vipterra genetics appear to be repelling or stopping corn feeding injury (Jim Anderson).  Wheat is well past the stage where control will be of value.

There was discussion around insecticides. 34 ml Matador has not been giving good control: 50 to 60 ml seems to be required, and timing is critical (night not noon!). The addition of a little surfactant may improve control.  Regardless of product, spraying should be done at night when feeding occurs to maximize kill.  Increased water volume is important to attain full canopy penetration.

The new biological product Delegate was discussed: it is giving good control, has no temperature restrictions, gives residual, is much safer for the user and is priced competitively, making it worth considering.  It is nice to have another group of insecticide added to the toolbox.

Hay: For armyworm in hay fields, cutting is a better method of control than using insecticides. The armyworm may still do some feeding as the hay wilts but they will move out of the field after a day or two.

Corn: As the hay is cut and the wheat matures armyworm larvae will start to move out these fields to find food. Start looking around the field edges of corn for armyworm moving into the field.

Corn up to the 7 leaf stage can take a fair amount of defoliation without significant yield loss. Scout 20 plants in five areas of the field and take note of the size of the armyworms.  Look at the field edges, especially those bordering hay or wheat crops.  The best time to scout is in the evening when the armyworm is most active. For corn plants past the 6 leaf stage, if you are finding more than 50% of the plants with damage and they are infested with larvae smaller than 1 inch (2.5cm), an insecticide treatment may be needed.  Because the larvae are moving in from the edge of the field, a perimeter spray may be sufficient.

Variegated Cutworm (Tom Cowan’s article):  Isolated severe feeding damage in soybeans caused by the variegated cutworm (Peridroma saucia).  The variegated cutworm is another migrating moth that comes into Ontario in the early spring around the same time as the true armyworm. The females are attracted to low growing vegetation to lay eggs. This is a climbing cutworm and feeds on the leaves of the plants: in severe cases stems can be girdled and replanting required. Typically this insect is not a serious problem in soybeans in Ontario but this year it seems to have caused some sporadic damage and in some cases to large sections of field. The damage is found in no-till soybeans with dense spring weed cover: corn residue in the field provides a perfect hiding spot for the larvae during the day.

Soybeans can withstand a fair amount of defoliation in the vegetative growth stage before any yield loss is noticed. If you are finding more then 30% defoliation in the vegetative stages, use of an insecticide may be needed.  Matador and Silencer are registered for cutworm control in soybeans and applications should be made in the evening when cutworms are active. Larvae larger then 2.5cm may be more difficult to control with insecticides.  See field crop news or CropPest Ontario for more information www.omafra.gov.on.ca/croppest.

 Soybean Aphids:  Soybean aphids are appearing in the region so begin scouting.  It is still too early to predict what soybean aphid numbers will be like this year.

 Soybean Cyst nematode:  Early planted soybeans have been in the ground long enough for SCN cysts to develop.  When scouting for cysts use a shovel to dig plants up making sure to keep soil around the roots (cysts dislodge easily).  Susceptible soybeans will have the most SCN reproduction but SCN resistant varieties will also have some cysts presents.  Note the amount of SCN on resistant soybeans which could indicate “moderate” variety resistance or development of new SCN populations (SCN types/races) which can bypass the resistance genes present in the variety.

 Corn Nematodes:  Corn nematodes such as root lesion have been observed this year particularly on lighter textured soils.  Look for corn which has uneven growth and lagging behind as potential nematode problem areas.  Use a soil probe inserted at a 45 degree angle through the root area in order to collect soil and roots for lab analysis.  The Pest Diagnostic Clinic in Guelph as well as SGS AgriFood (Guelph) and A & L Labs to provide nematode services.

 Rhizoctonia, Fusarium, Phytophthora and Pythium soybean seedling diseases – OMAFRA and AAFC Harrow are working in conjunction with the North Central US States to survey and determine the geographically distribution of these plant pathogenic fungi.  In addition, new molecular and field based diagnostic tests will be developed from this project.  We are looking for soybean fields with these diseases and if you have encountered or know of fields from this year or previous years please contact Albert Tenuta at 519-360-8307 or at albert.tenuta@ontario.ca.

Double Cropping Soybeans:  There continues to be a lot of interest in double cropping soybeans after wheat this year.  Seed discounts of 50% are common.

Crop Insurance: Some reseeding claims on soybeans and edible beans have been reported but the number of fields has been relatively small so far.  Online reporting is available.  Please try online reporting if you have not done so in the past.  Please do not leave phone reporting to the last day (June 30th) since the phones are very busy that day.

Crop Insurance deadlines:
June 30: Spring seeded final acreage reports due.
July 10: Premiums due.

Southwest Crop Diagnostic Days Ridgetown
July 4 and 5, 2012 (U of Guelph– Ridgetown Campus)

Publications: Publication 812 – Field Crop Protection Guide is available at any resource center, or by calling Service Ontario Publications, 1-800-668-9938 or 416-326-5300.

CropLine – 1-888-449-0937
CropPest Website –www.omafra.gov.on.ca/croppest

Ridgetown Crop Technology Contacts:

Cowan, Tom 519-674-1696 Field Crop Entomologist (A) tom.cowan@ontario.ca
Hayes, Adam 519-674-1621 Soil Management Specialist, Field Crops adam.hayes@ontario.ca
Johnson, Peter 519-271-8180 Cereals Specialist peter.johnson@ontario.ca
LeBoeuf, Janice 519-674-1699 Vegetable Crop Specialist janice.leboeuf@ontario.ca
Roddy, Elaine 519-674-1616 Vegetable Crop Specialist elaine.roddy@ontario.ca
Spieser, Helmut 519-674-1618 Agricultural Engineer helmut.spieser@ontario.ca
Tenuta, Albert 519-674-1617 Field Crop Plant Pathologist albert.tenuta@ontario.ca
Verhallen, Anne 519-674-1614 Soil Management Specialist, Hort Crops anne.verhallen@ontario.ca