Blog Banner

Straight Stalk

Current crop information updates and research highlights
Corn

2018 Crop Management Conferences Save the Dates

The 2018 University of Illinois Crop Management Conferences will be held as follows: January 24- Holiday Inn, Mt. Vernon January 31- University of Illinois Springfield February 7- iHotel and Conference Center, Champaign February 21- Kishwaukee College, Malta Look for registration information in early December....

Read More >

Corn Survey 2016 confirmed map
click image to view 3 more

New Corn Disease Identified in Illinois

Posted by N. Dennis Bowman - Corn

Extension Staff Join with other Agencies to Survey Illinois for New Corn Disease The USDA just announced the presence of Bacterial leaf streak in corn, as determined by recent surveys of the Corn Belt states. In Illinois, a cooperative survey was organized with APHIS-PPQ (Animal Plant Health Inspection Service), IDA (Illinois Department of Agriculture), CAPS (Illinois N...

Read More >

2016WeedGuide

2016 Weed Control Guide Available

The 2016 Ohio/Indiana/Illinois Weed Control guide is now available as a free downloadable pdf file or a printed copy is available for $15.25 from the Ohio State Extension service...

Read More >

DSC 1755

Don't be surprised by very low K soil tests this fall!

Better than expected yields and a very dry fall are causing soils to test very low for available potassium (K). Most of the K in corn is in the foliage an is washed back into the soil by rainfall as the residue decays. Some of the K may also be locked into very dry soil clay particles. If you look at annual graphs of soil available K, September is traditionally the low point in the cycle, but norm...

Read More >

EarthDay3

Emergence well underway

The corn planted April 1 benefited from warmer than normal conditions and started emerging on April 16 and is now close to 100%. But colder temperatures over the last few days has slowed additional growth....

Read More >

DSC 7532
click image to view 2 more

First Corn Planting

No April Fools joke, corn planting started at the South Farm yesterday. Not very much, but for a couple of experiments looking at planting date, April 1 will be the first of several planting dates included. Heat units will not likely accumulate very fast but I will start tracking using the U2U Corn GDD tool. Average weather would predict emergence...

Read More >

DJI00031
click image to view 2 more

ExploreACES

ExploreACES, the college open house that showcases activities across all college departments and gives prospective students a taste of the range of programs housed in the University of Illinois College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES) is being held today and tomorrow. There was a lot of traffic past my UAV display table today. Despite bad weather we were able t...

Read More >

Slide12
click image to view 5 more

Evaluating corn after frost

Making a replant decision after frost can be challenging. Which plants do you include in population counts, when evaluating a damaged corn stand? In 2012 a hard freeze hit the Corn Planting Date Study here at the CSREC, we took that opportunity to tag plants with different levels of damage and follow them to harvest. The bottom line is, if you don't see more than a hint of green after 5-7 days, it...

Read More >

April 27th Rainfall

From the Map it looks like most of Illinois south of I-72 received at least 1 inch of rain yesterday. That should get a lot of corn off to a good start....

Read More >

2014 County Corn Yields (NASS)
click image to view 2 more

2013 Corn and Soybean Yields

A few days ago, the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released the county corn and soybean production numbers. This annual event is often a source of bragging rights for which county had the highest corn and soybean yields. The top yielding corn county in 2013 was Carroll in northwestern Illinois with an average yield of 200 bushels per acre. For soybean, DeKalb took the honors wi...

Read More >

New Corn Replanting Decision Aid

Deciding on whether or not to replant can be a difficult decision. Cutworm, compaction and seedling blight are some of the problems that can lead to reduced plant populations. The sight of an uneven reduced stand is often more than many farmers can take, but the desire to "fix-it" may not make sense agronomically or economically. For fields where the stand has been relatively evenly th...

Read More >

DSC 4085
click image to view 2 more

Field activity in the area

Last Thursday through Sunday saw much field preparation in the Champaign to Decatur area. There was a continuous shuttle of anhydrous tanks on country roads. In my travels I spotted, one large operation with 4 tracked tractors working in adjacent fields all pulling large applicators with two-tank anhydrous carts trailing behind.  A pair a planters were also working nearby....

Read More >

Palmer amaranth infestation in Madison County, Illinois. Photo credit, Robert Bellm

Weed Worries

Six years ago I wrote a column about the appearance of herbicide resistant weeds and one of the "horror" stories I mentioned was about cotton producers in Georgia. At that time, cotton producers and University researchers in a five county region of Georgia were struggling to figure out how to profitably grow cotton in fields that were infested with a new herbicide resistant weed, glyphosate res...

Read More >

MRTN/Split Rate Calculator makes #7 on Ag App of the Year List

Our MRTN Nitrogen Split Rate Calculator app made the Crop Life list of best agriculture apps of 2012 . Check out the whole list here: http://www.croplife.com/article/32159/13-new-mobile-agriculture-apps-for-2013...

Read More >

two flavors

MRTN/Split Rate Calculator apps available

The MRTN Android app has been updated to include a split rate and cost comparison calculator. The new version is also now available for the Apple iPhone and iPad. The Apple app is available in the iTunes app store listed as " MRTN/Nitrogen Application Calculator ". To download the Android app, click on this link...

Read More >

Aspergillus ear rot. Photo by Robert Bellm

Aflatoxin Alert

Pouring salt into a wound- Despite recent rains the drought continues to reduce the value of this year's corn crop. To some area farmers' dismay, elevators are rejecting truckloads of grain based on the detection of aflatoxin in the grain. Aflatoxin is a toxic and carcinogenic compound produced by the Aspergillus fungus. This ear rot fungus occurs most often in hot dry years. It will in...

Read More >

DSC 2918
click image to view 3 more

Cover crop seeding experiment

This summer/fall I have the opportunity to assist with a on-farm cover crop seeding trial. I am evaluating several different seeding methods from a ground-based applicator. The first few rounds were planted/seeded last week until a welcome rain stopped them. Some of the units have actual ground contact and lightly incorporate the seed. Looking at the strips this week shows some excelle...

Read More >

IMAG0066

Short Crop-Long Tail or maybe Long Tales

"Short crop, long tail" is one of those catchy phrases that stick in your brain. I remember hearing it early in my Extension career after another drought year from one of our Crop Outlook and Marketing Specialists. Stories of the "drought of aught 12" will likely be told for years and "short crops have long tales" may also be accurate. As an agronomist I try to avoid economics, when pos...

Read More >

Drought Resource Website

The latest information from the University of Illinois on:  Dealing with Drought and Heat -  This site contains information on Crops, Livestock, Finances and Home & Garden web.extension.uiuc.edu/drought...

Read More >

DSC 2466

Rootless Corn Syndrome

This spring, unlike the last few years, has been very dry in some parts of the state. Other areas have had more than they wished for. Unfortunately, reports about rootless corn are coming in from areas all around the state. The orange areas in the map below indicate the areas that have had the least rainfall for the last 30 days. The data comes from the National Weather Service's Ad...

Read More >

May302012-001

Million Dollar Rain?

It has been a dusty spring so far and moisture concerns have been on the rise. Rain over the last weekend has pushed back the short term concerns for most of the area....

Read More >

Dead plant between two relatively slightly damaged plants.
click image to view 4 more

Frost Follow-up

We generally advise that, prior to the 4 leaf-collar stage, frost will destroy leaf tissue, but the growing point is below ground and protected. The plants will be stressed but alive. The April 11th freeze was severely damaging to the corn planted on March 16th in our planting date study. On that clear night around 1:00am the temperature dropped below 32 degrees and did not cross back above the li...

Read More >

True Armyworm moth

Trapping Moths

Many of our agricultural insect pests do not overwinter in Illinois and have to migrate in every season. Monitoring that migration can supply us with information about how severe problems may be and when scouting should start. We currently have moth traps around the state monitoring the influx of Black Cutworm and True Armyworm moths. You can check results at this regional...

Read More >

March 16th planted corn the afternoon of March 11th after early morning frost.
click image to view 4 more

Frosty concerns

Surface temperatures all around the state dipped below freezing yesterday morning, March 11th. Jim Angel provided a list of the minimum temperatures on his blog . The Midwest Climate Center posted this map of the cold coverage:...

Read More >

Crop Insurance Defines, Planting Too Early

Crop insurance COMBO products, which include Yield Protection and Revenue Protection plans, have "earliest planting date" restrictions. For corn in Illinois, the earliest planting date is April 6th, except for counties in the extreme southern part of the state. For soybeans the crop insurance "earliest planting date" is April 21 for counties south of and included in a line from Carthage to Kankake...

Read More >