The anticipated increase in dicamba and 2,4-D use associated with XtendTM and EnlistTM crops will require enhanced stewardship to prevent problems with off-target movement. While many factors influence herbicide drift, high wind speeds pose the greatest threat of moving herbicides off the intended target. Read more about Wind Speed and Herbicide Application
Integrated Crop Management News
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Soybean varieties that are resistant to the soybean cyst nematode (SCN) are an essential tool for managing the pest. The SCN control provided by resistant soybean varieties can vary greatly, just as yield. Iowa State University evaluates the SCN control and yield of SCN-resistant soybean varieties in field experiments conducted throughout Iowa annually. Results of the 2016 experiments are now available online and will be distributed in print in January 2017. Read more about Performance of SCN-resistant soybean varieties in Iowa in 2016
Leaving crop residue on the soil surface improves nutrient cycling and, ultimately, soil quality that will increase and sustain soil productivity. Through conservation practices that include balanced residue management and soil fertility, environmental quality can be substantially enhanced. By retaining crop residue on the soil surface, soil organic carbon (SOC) and nutrient-holding capacity are increased while protecting the soil from wind and water erosion. Read more about Effects of Crop Residue Removal, Upcoming Soil Health Conference
Despite the environmental and soil benefits that cover crops provide, many farmers are reluctant to try cover crops because of reports of possible yield reduction in the following crop. Recently, Dr. Sotorius Archontoulis suggested that biotic factors could influence whether rye affects corn yield. Read more about Reducing the Risk of Corn Seedling Disease, Yield Loss After Cereal Rye Cover Crop
The 2016 crop year is in the books. While there were a couple of periods where it looked like the weather was going to have significant impact, it turns out only to be short lived. State average yields are projected to be a record for both corn (199 bushels per acre) and soybean (59 bushels per acre). Read more about 2016 FACTS Crop Year in Review
The EPA recently approved a new, low-volatile dicamba formulation - M1768 (XtendimaxTM with VaporGripTM Technology) for dicamba-resistant soybean cultivars. While we recognize the benefit this technology provides in managing the growing herbicide resistance problem, we have concerns regarding the risks for non-target plant injury associated with an anticipated expanded use of dicamba. Read more about Increased Dicamba Use Requires Enhanced Stewardship
The soybean cyst nematode (SCN) is capable of causing serious yield loss on soybeans every year. Back in the “good ole days,” a farmer was “good to go” with SCN management if he or she knew what fields were infested with the nematode and then grew SCN-resistant soybean varieties in rotation with the nonhost crop corn. Nowadays, things are more complicated. SCN numbers may be building up and causing increased yield loss and the buildup can go unrecognized because a soybean crop often does not appear stressed above ground, even though yield loss is occurring. This article explains why this SCN numbers might be building up in your fields and how to check. Read more about What’s the Situation with SCN in Your Fields?
An online course to help employers of agricultural pesticides train workers is now approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and has been updated to meet the training requirements of the revised federal Worker Protection Standard (WPS). Read more about EPA-Approved Worker Protection Standard Train-the-Trainer Course Available Online
Bumper grain yields are being harvested from most Iowa fields this fall. However, due to low crop prices producers are thinking of reducing phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) fertilizer application rates. A few important management options should be considered when making decisions with unfavorable crop/fertilizer price ratios. Read more about High Yields, Low Grain Prices: Manage Phosphorus and Potassium Wisely
This time of year brings harvest, preparations for winter, and the planting of cover crops. Cereal rye is a popular and versatile cover crop that is planted in the fall and terminated in the spring. Traditional termination methods include chemicals, mowing, tilling, and even crimping prior to planting of the row crop. The roller crimper, originally designed by the Rodale Institute, is used to crimp the cereal rye stem in several places (Fig. 1). The flattened rye can create a mulch bed on top of the soil. Read more about Cereal Rye Suitability for Roller Crimping and No-till Applications