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Northern Illinois Agriculture

University of Illinois Extension
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What about the livestock?

Posted by Russel Higgins -

2012 has been an exceptionally challenging year for livestock producers in Northern Illinois. Limited rainfall has literally caused pastures to "burn up". Predominant grass pastures have gone into dormancy and hungry cows, sheep and goats are searching pastures for anything edible, including potentially toxic plants. A number of questions have been asked Can row crops be harveste...

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Vince

Despite the year, the research continues

I expect few predicted the 2012 growing season. I had high expectations when trials went in the ground at the NIARC. Unfortunately, we have been reminded of the effect Mother Nature can have upon the livelihood of those involved in production agriculture. With precipitation she can be generous or not, and unless you invest in irrigation there is little one can do. There have been many suggestio...

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Bob L

A little relief

Posted by Russel Higgins - Corn

Scattered showers over recent days have brought relief to farmers and their crops. Most of our corn crop has progressed to R2 or R3 and we will start to get a better grasp on our potential yields. We are continuing making applications on several extended studies and have dug roots for our Rootworm evaluation trials. Bob Lawless of Syngenta visited us yesterday to evaluate roots from his studies...

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Hot, hotter, hottest

Posted by Russel Higgins - Soybeans

Today I managed to get several outdoor projects done in the morning and decided that the afternoon would be a great time to catch up on indoor activities. The fact that afternoon temperatures have inched back up into the upper nineties may have had something to do with my decision. Traveling across northern Illinois this week I am starting to see Spider mite infestations starting to flare in soybe...

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Clouds, wind, little rain

Posted by Russel Higgins -

The ominous clouds that quickly passed over the NIARC this morning were accompanied by high winds (40 mph measured at the research center) but little moisture. The wind caused some green snap on our last planted corn. Currently at the NIARC we are applying our final fungicide treatments. Our fungicide study results help answer questions posed by producers. Many have asked if fungicides would be...

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Back to brown Illinois!

Posted by Russel Higgins -

I arrived home from South Carolina on Friday evening; my return trip through southeastern states gave me the opportunity to experience several thunderstorms. However, as our route brought us back into east central Illinois it was obvious that few of the southern rains I experienced fell on Illinois. This was most evident in the brown hue of most of the rural yards we saw. Almost all of...

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Drought resources

Posted by Russel Higgins -

As of July 10th the entirety of Illinois is officially under a drought status according to the US Drought Monitor. As this weather pattern continues many questions ranging from survivability of the crop to emergency forage harvesting opportunities have arisen. The University of Illinois has posted the Illinois Drought Resources website. The site can be accessed at...

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Utilizing drought-damaged corn for livestock feed

Posted by Russel Higgins -

The lack of rainfall has many livestock producers scrambling for feed supplies. Pasture and hay growth has come to a standstill and many are contemplating the future feed needs of their herds, and utilizing the drought damaged corn is looking more attractive each day. There simply isn't enough hay available to supply the herd throughout the remainder of the year through next spring. And with the c...

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Potassium deficiency symptoms in corn and soybean

Posted by Russel Higgins -

"Why are we seeing so many symptoms of Potassium deficiency in our corn and soybean fields?" This was a question posed to Dr. Fabian Fernandez, Soil and Fertility Specialist in the Department of Crop Sciences at the University of Illinois at the recent NIARC Agronomy Day. In his response, Fabian shared that the symptoms were likely due to the dry conditions and the plants inability to r...

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An almost perfect day

Posted by Russel Higgins -

I have participated in Field Days where it was too hot, cold, windy, or not enough of a breeze. But yesterday there were no such complaints at the NIARC. A crowd of over 100 individuals attended the morning program to hear University of Illinois Specialists share their expertise on topics ranging from entomology, weed control and agronomy. I'll be sharing comments made at the event in u...

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Tomorrow is the big day!

Posted by Russel Higgins -

We cleaned all day and were ready for company! Come join us tomorrow morning at the NIARC for our morning Agronomy Day program. Our first tour will leave at 9:30 AM. There is no cost for the program and lunch will be provided. Speakers and topics include - What does it take to produce high soybean yields – Emerson Nafziger - Update on corn rootworm issues and...

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Hottest day in July.... so far

Posted by Russel Higgins - Corn

At 3 pm we are at 96 degrees at the NIARC. The US Drought Monitor has most of northern Illinois designated as a moderate drought area as the sweltering conditions continue. http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/DM_midwest.htm Corn plants attempting to pollinate under these conditions are facing several challenges, both in...

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Signs are up

Are you interested in comparing different herbicide combinations and programs? Would you like to know how they perform on a stressful year? Come and visit the NIARC! The weeds crew worked through another day in the upper nineties signing plots for our Agronomy Day next week. Whether you join us next week or later in the summer you can do some "comparison shopping" for your next years herbicide pro...

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Work continues

Posted by Russel Higgins -

Despite very uncomfortable working conditions, projects continue at the NIARC. Bins have been emptied, weeds have been pulled or hoed, post applications are applied or evaluated, and weeds are measured. On Monday I had the opportunity to visit campus (and deliver the aforementioned frozen soil samples). This has been one of the first trips I have made outside northern Illinois since the month o...

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