Blog

Mark Licht
April 16, 2021 11:07 AM

Alison Robertson
April 16, 2021 11:07 AM

With cool weather conditions potentially causing delays in cover crop termination, what options are available? Cereal rye ahead of soybean is not nearly as problematic. While planting green may not be advised for beginning cover crop users, more experienced cover crop users have...

Crop Production

Angie Rieck-Hinz
April 15, 2021 3:57 PM

Recent research showing the benefits of sulfur application to corn in Iowa have many folks asking questions about ammonium thiosulfate or ATS. ATS and ammonium sulfate (AMS) contain both nitrogen and sulfur, however in different amounts. AMS also differs from ATS in that all the sulfur in AMS is...

Soil Fertility

Rebecca Vittetoe
April 15, 2021 9:24 AM

While it seems like most alfalfa fields are greening up quite nicely this spring, there have been a few reports of winter injury in alfalfa stands, especially if stands or parts of stands may have been covered by sheets of ice during the winter.

Take some time now to evaluate stands for...

Crop Production

Ashley Dean
April 14, 2021 4:32 PM

Even though the weather has been variable this past week, one thing is certain: black cutworm is moving through Iowa. During week 2 of the Iowa Moth Trapping Network (April 4 to April 10), our cooperators reported 122 total black cutworm (BCW) and 21 true armyworm (TAW) moths. Windy conditions...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites

Paul Kassel
April 13, 2021 11:43 AM

Does the recent increase in nitrogen (N) cost and the increase in corn grain price warrant a change in nitrogen rates in 2021?  The following discussion gives an overview of the current N cost and corn price situation

New crop corn for delivery during the fall of 2021 was $4.05 per bushel...

Crop Production

Mark Licht
April 9, 2021 2:55 PM

Zachary Clemens
April 9, 2021 2:55 PM

Choosing a corn seeding rate is as much art as it is science because soil conditions and seed quality can greatly affect the outcome. The goal is to choose a seeding rate that produces an economical optimal yield as opposed to the maximum yield. A seeding rate has to factor in seed quality,...

Crop Production

Justin Glisan
April 9, 2021 12:21 PM

Dennis Todey
April 9, 2021 12:21 PM

The final April climatological outlooks issued by the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) show elevated chances of warmer than average temperatures. On the precipitation front, there is no clear signal for Iowa, as outlooks continues to show a moderate La Niña configuration with above average...

Crop Production

Paul Kassel
April 9, 2021 10:10 AM

The following are a few thoughts on nitrogen (N) management for the 2021 growing season.  Many fertilizer decisions have already been made - however a quick review of N plans is in order. However, the recent increase in corn grain prices and in-season cost of nitrogen fertilizer may warrant of...

Crop Production

Ashley Dean
April 8, 2021 11:02 AM

The 2021 moth trapping season is underway, and our volunteers placed traps the week of March 28. Black cutworm (BCW) monitoring is a long-standing project in Iowa, and true armyworm (TAW) was added in 2017. Both of these pests are migratory, making it difficult to predict where populations will...

Crop Production, Insects and Mites

Ryan W Bergman
April 7, 2021 6:26 AM

Meaghan Anderson
April 7, 2021 6:26 AM

As the weather turns warmer and the days grow longer, many of us are thinking about getting equipment like sprayers ready for the spring. Beyond making sure the machine is mechanically sound and fit for spring (which...

Equipment and Machinery

Prashant Jha
April 6, 2021 11:06 AM

Meaghan Anderson
April 6, 2021 11:06 AM

Ramawatar Yadav
April 6, 2021 11:06 AM

As it has started to warm up, folks are ready to implement early-spring weed management programs, especially in fields with infestations of winter annuals like field pennycress and marestail (horseweed). Spring burndown (preplant) herbicide programs should target winter annual plants at the...

Weeds

Alison Robertson
April 6, 2021 8:30 AM

Jyotsna Acharya
April 6, 2021 8:30 AM

As more producers integrate cover crops into their operation, there has been increased interest in planting corn into a green or living cover crop, such as cereal rye, and terminating the cover crop after planting.

To help provide some insight into how “planting green” might affect corn...

Plant Diseases

Levi Powell
April 6, 2021 6:26 AM

Ryan W Bergman
April 6, 2021 6:26 AM

Program Specialist Levi Powell with ISU Digital Ag explains a quick tutorial for checking the closing wheel alignment of your planter in the shop before heading to the field.

Equipment and Machinery

Levi Powell
April 5, 2021 6:26 AM

Ryan W Bergman
April 5, 2021 6:26 AM

ISU Digital Ag Program Specialist Levi Powell explains a simple process for checking planter depth settings in the shop to increase machine accuracy before you head to the field.

Equipment and Machinery

Alison Robertson
April 2, 2021 2:02 PM

Sarah Kurtz
April 2, 2021 2:02 PM

Occasionally, corn planted after a cereal rye cover crop may have reduced yields. Proposed reasons for this yield decline include allelopathy, seedling disease, nitrogen immobilization and poor planter performance. In our lab, we are interested in understanding how seedling disease and...

Crop Production

Terry Basol
April 2, 2021 1:30 PM

Mark Hanna
April 2, 2021 1:30 PM

Ryan W Bergman
April 2, 2021 1:30 PM

Joshua Michel
April 2, 2021 1:30 PM

The recent dry conditions across the state, carried through from the 2020 growing season, has created an environment in which field fires are of concern this spring if current conditions continue to persist.  Strong winds can increase problems by acting as a catalyst, drying crop residue,...

Crop Production, Equipment and Machinery, Soil Fertility

Levi Powell
April 1, 2021 1:17 PM

Ryan W Bergman
April 1, 2021 1:17 PM

Spring planting season may come with added challenges as growers continue to deal with the effects of last August’s derecho event. Many fields through central Iowa were riddled with downed corn, and while some fields were able to be partially harvested, others were damaged so severely that...

Crop Production

Mark Licht
April 1, 2021 11:35 AM

Zachary Clemens
April 1, 2021 11:35 AM

The nice weather and dry conditions have led some to think about the start of planting. My opinion, it is too early. Remember crop insurance replant dates are not until April 11. Use the extra days to get plans in order and a little rest and relaxation before the pace picks up.

...

Crop Production

Meaghan Anderson
March 26, 2021 12:55 PM

Bob Hartzler
March 26, 2021 12:55 PM

Susana Goggi
March 26, 2021 12:55 PM

Volunteer corn remains high on many minds this spring and one of the biggest questions is how much of those corn seed will germinate this spring. In an effort to learn more about the challenge we’re facing, Bob Hartzler collected soil and corn ears from the same fields he collected from last...

Crop Production, Weeds

Ryan W Bergman
March 22, 2021 4:04 PM

Levi Powell
March 22, 2021 4:04 PM

Ben Covington
March 22, 2021 4:04 PM

Matt Darr
March 22, 2021 4:04 PM

In addition to conducting regular spring maintenance on your planter, which we outlined in a recent post, it’s important to adjust the settings and perform...

Equipment and Machinery

Levi Powell
March 22, 2021 2:44 PM

Ryan W Bergman
March 22, 2021 2:44 PM

Levi Powell with ISU Digital Ag walks through calculating and setting downforce for your planter and how downforce affects your performance in the field.

Equipment and Machinery

Joel DeJong
March 19, 2021 9:55 AM

Antonio Mallarino
March 19, 2021 9:55 AM

Prices for soil fertility inputs have increased greatly in recent months. The bi-weekly “Iowa Production Cost Report” showed a 51% cost increase in anhydrous, a 31% increase for urea, 56% higher...

Soil Fertility

Aaron Saeugling
March 19, 2021 9:48 AM

With a long winter coming to an end, our focus now turns to planter setup. While we often focus on new equipment and updates to our planters, knowledge of the basic function of the planter and the role each part of the planter plays in seeding depth and spacing, as well as upkeep of these parts...

Equipment and Machinery

Daren Mueller
March 18, 2021 9:49 AM

If you grow specialty crops in Iowa or another North Central state, please help us with a study to:

  • assess frequency, severity, and other details of herbicide drift damage.
  • measure related farmer...
Weeds

Shawn Shouse
March 11, 2021 6:18 PM

Kristina TeBockhorst
March 11, 2021 6:18 PM

With spring temperatures arriving in Iowa, grain producers should pay extra attention to the condition of the grain in their bins.

Cold winter temperatures keep mold and insect activity low in stored grain. Rising spring temperatures can trigger spoiling of grain that is...

Grain Handling and Storage

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