Muddy boots mean good and bad news for farmers

This optimism also increases the likelihood that barley will receive protective fungicide treatments. “We will continue to research wheat, but we are on the verge of lowering yields as to whether we would recoup the cost and benefit of application,” Arnusch said.

The corn crop is on the watch list this week. Arnusch said emergence was not ideal in some fields due to crusting of the soil. Recent rain might help fill in the gaps, although these plants are several days behind.

As soon as fields are dry enough to walk through, scouting for western corn rootworm in young corn will be first on the to-do list. The farm uses traits to protect against the pest, but resistance is well documented in many areas and Arnusch likes to keep tabs on feeding levels.

“We know with traits that the rootworm has to ingest a bit of the root to get the dose. We’ve already found a few early instar larvae and want to track them,” he said. Colorado State University has conducted on-farm studies on possible resistance to underground protein traits, as well as chemicals used to control beetles above ground.

“So far we haven’t seen any resistance, but we’re changing the traits to try to avoid that,” he said. “The root worm is the one that really requires detective work.”

This farm is experiencing the first harvest of sorghum or milo since 1958. Arnusch said cold fronts that moved through the area caused soil temperatures to drop and did not promote emergence. said.

Arnusch called friends with experience growing milo in other states to find out what to look out for this season. “We’re going to dig a lot. We’re going to do a lot of reconnaissance. We’re going to do a lot of walking in the field. We’re trying to learn everything we can to learn about this culture and try to be ready,” he said. he says.

The sorghum was also planted in two different management configurations – 30 inch rows and 7.5 inch centers. Narrower rows will be treated much like a cereal crop – where crop residue is maximized to retain weeds and beverages provided by flood irrigation. Sorghum in 30 inch rows will be treated more like a maize crop with light cultivation done between the rows which could be used for furrow irrigation.

“We’ve heard a lot of opinions, but the jury is still out and we’re looking for the style of management that best rewards us,” he said.

All of these thoughts and questions swirl around as Arnusch drives and watches the crops. Behind the wheel – whether it’s a truck or a tractor – is his place of reflection. Don’t ask it for a music playlist because it uses quiet ride time to process. The younger generation may have the earbuds; he’s too busy counting blessings to swing it.

“Most of the on-farm income comes from our seed production and our distillers grain. Barley is important to us in both of these sales areas and having this decent crop really makes me feel good right now” , he noted.


Are the rains erratic if you live locally? Garrabrant fields collected nearly 2 inches of precipitation towards the end of the week, while those just 10 miles away received a quarter inch.

“I’m a little soggy right now,” he said. He planted about 75% of his maize crop, but reported that soybean planting was still lagging behind in his area. “It doesn’t take long to plant once we start, it’s finding those windows that’s hard,” he said.

“I’m happy with how everyone’s crops look in this region, but I’m not as happy with mine,” he added.

The latest USDA-NASS crop progress report shows that Ohio corn is 72% planted and 51% emerged. The progress of soybean planting was 56%, while 29% was emerged. Statewide, topsoil moisture conditions were rated as insufficient at 1%, adequate at 52%, and excess at 47%.

The inability to drain the fields has prompted Garrabrant to alter a set of plans so far. Last fall, he planted 70 pounds per acre of a mix of cereal rye, clover and other species as an introduction to the cover crop concept. He intended to mow and bale the lush cover for cattle feed. Too many weather delays caused him to abandon this idea and plant green instead.

“It was interesting because it wasn’t really part of the plan to plant in something as thick and tall as that. And it really put the technology of the planter to the test,” he said. declared. The drill is equipped with automated row downforce, row cleaners and an aggressive no-till closing wheel.

“I was impressed with the quality of the planting I was getting. I had no problems packing. The closing wheels really seemed to seal the trench,” he said. “While I’m glad it’s planted and how it was planted, I’m a little nervous about the nitrogen-retaining grass.”

He hoped the added residue would allow him to return to the field more quickly to burn cover. He planned to add 28% (nitrogen) to his herbicide mix as a carrier.

“I still have to make sure everything is compatible in the pot test,” he said. On the wish list for next year is to add 2×2 fertilizer placement capabilities.

For this year however, he plans to set aside that corn. “I don’t know if the cover will allow a knife or coulter to slice through the thick cover. I have a Y-toolbar for my sprayer if I need to go in that direction”, did he declare.

Beans struggled to come out of the ground in some areas, he reported. Recent rains have probably contributed to this situation. So far, most farmers seem to be sticking to their cultivation plans, he said.

Like Arnusch, Garrabrant enjoys field work and time behind the wheel. “I’m pretty picky about the work I do and like to stay focused on what’s going on behind me. So I don’t listen to a lot of music or anything else on the pitch. I want to know if there is a problem that arises or something that needs my attention,” he said.

“I don’t have Cadillac taxis either. So I guess all the banging and banging is my music,” he said.

Managing the stress of weather delays also draws a measured response from the young farmer. “I try to keep in mind that there are things in my control and things out of my control.

“What’s out of my control will always be out of my control and something will come out of it,” he said.

Pamela Smith can be contacted at [email protected]

Follow her on Twitter @PamSmithDTN

About Marco C. Nichols

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