Posts Tagged ‘20:7’

WCU Volume 20, Issue 7 – May 4, 2012

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

PDF Version of WCU 20:7 – May 4, 2012

In this issue:

Vegetable Crops
Vegetable Crop Insects
Blackhawk Naturalyte Insecticide Label
Potato Late Blight Confirmed in North Carolina
Inspect Watermelon and Cantaloupe Transplants, New Bacterial Fruit Blotch Factsheet
Disinfecting Flats for Transplants
Air Pollution Damage to Transplants in the Greenhouse

Agronomic Crops
Agronomic Crop Insects
Touching Up No-Till Soybean Fields
Look at Those Early Planted Corn Fields
Grain Marketing Highlights

General
Black Light and Pheromone Trapping Program Has Begun
Application Deadline for USDA Organic Initiative Approaching

 

Announcements
2012 Wye REC Strawberry Twilight – May 9
University of Delaware Small Fruit Twilight – May 22

Weather

Application Deadline for USDA Organic Initiative Approaching

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) State Conservationist Russell Morgan reminds local organic farmers and those transitioning to organic production practices to contact their local NRCS office soon to find out if they are eligible for the agency’s Organic Initiative.

June 1, 2012 is the cut-off date for applications to be considered in the third ranking period of fiscal year (FY) 2012, although applications are always accepted on a continuous basis.

The Organic Initiative is funded through NRCS’ Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). Interested farmers must submit their applications through the local USDA NRCS Service Center.

“Although Delaware has a small population of organic growers, NRCS is committed to helping these farmers implement conservation practices that have been proven beneficial to organic production,” said Morgan. “This Organic Initiative has made financial and technical resources readily available to local growers to improve the management and productivity of their operation.”

Since FY 2009, NRCS has provided $172,000 in financial assistance to Delaware certified organic producers, those who want to make the transition to organic production, and producers who sell less than $5,000 in organic products annually. Approximately $50 million is available nationwide in FY 2012.

The EQIP Organic Initiative offers a wide array of conservation practices specifically designed for organic production. The top six Organic Initiative conservation practices are cover crops, nutrient management, integrated pest management, seasonal high tunnels, crop rotation, and fencing.

Changes for 2012 include three ranking periods for current and transitioning producers; a threshold ranking score that can speed up approval for qualified applicants; required conservation practices that promote the consistent use of those practices; and an expanded list of conservation activity plans.

Learn more about the Organic Initiative and other programs and services at www.de.nrcs.usda.gov. To apply, contact your local USDA Service Center. In Sussex County, call 302-856-3990 x 3; in Kent County, call 302-741-2600 x 3; in New Castle County, call 302-832-3100 x 3.

Black Light and Pheromone Trapping Program Has Begun

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Joanne Whalen, Extension IPM Specialist; jwhalen@udel.edu

Our black light and CEW pheromone traps are now up and running for the season. The traps are generally checked on Monday and Thursday and counts are posted by early Tuesday and Friday morning. True Armyworm moth catches will be posted only through the month of May. We will once again check traps for all stink bug species. Please use the following link to access all trap information: http://ag.udel.edu/extension/IPM/traps/index.html. I will also begin the Crop Pest Hotline mid-May (instate: 800-345-7544; out of state: 302- 831-8851).

Grain Marketing Highlights – May 4, 2012

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Carl German, Extension Crops Marketing Specialist; clgerman@udel.edu

Seasonal Rally Stalls in Volatile Trading
The large sell-off in Wednesday’s session was attributed to commercial and noncommercial (speculative) trading. Specifically, noncommercial long liquidation impacted corn, soybean, and SRW wheat futures prices negatively across the board. By the end of the day session, old crop corn was down 17, new crop down 7; old crop soybeans down 17, new crop down 24; and old crop SRW wheat down 26, new crop down 28 cents per bushel, respectively. Market analysts have been warning such an occurrence was in the offing. One reason given for the sell-off was growing concern over the European economy, which just might be the 800 pound gorilla in the room. Others mentioned were rumors that China may have canceled on some old crop corn bookings, and the dollar strength buoyed by fears of a lingering and deepening recession in Europe.

These markets continue to have bullish sentiments in old crop corn, old crop soybeans, and new crop soybeans. However, at this stage in the growing season we have more questions than answers concerning use, stocks on hand, and production potential for the 2012 cropping season. As of April 29 U.S. corn planting was reported at 53 percent complete, as compared to 27 percent for the five year average. U.S. corn exports for the week ending April 26 were extremely bullish for corn, extremely bullish for soybeans, and slightly bearish for wheat.

USDA’s next monthly Supply and Demand Report will be released on May 10. The report is expected to be important in regard to use and Southern Hemisphere production projections. U.S. production potential will still be based upon baseline projections and planting intentions.

Market Strategy
Making decisions on whether to advance sales continues to be somewhat of a guessing game at this point in time. For example, we won’t know 2012 corn and soybean U.S. crop size until the June 30 actual plantings and the July S/D reports. Therefore, we continue to get mixed signals on whether additional sales are warranted at this point in time. One has about a 50/50 chance of being considered ‘right’ on pulling a sales trigger now as opposed to waiting. A most important consideration in deciding to advance a sale lies in determining whether one can make money at current price levels? In overnight e-trade, Dec ‘12 corn futures closed at $5.30; Nov ‘12 soybeans at $13.66; and July ‘12 SRW wheat at $6.17 per bushel.

For technical assistance on making grain marketing decisions contact Carl L. German, Extension Crops Marketing Specialist.

Look at Those Early Planted Corn Fields

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Mark VanGessel, Extension Weed Specialist; mjv@udel.edu

Some of the earliest planted corn fields were sprayed with preemergence herbicide, but then had 7 to 10 days without rain to activate them. You need to check to those fields for emerging weeds and be prepared to spray earlier than you may have expected. Also, I have seen more yellow nutsedge this year than I have in the past few years. So be sure to identify those “grasses”, and be sure you know what grass species it is or whether it is nutsedge.

Touching Up No-Till Soybean Fields

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Mark VanGessel, Extension Weed Specialist; mjv@udel.edu

I have had a number of calls about burndowns not being effective for no-till soybeans. Poor control can be attributed to a number of reasons, weeds were too large, gallonage was too low, and wrong products or adjuvants were used. But the question is what to do now. First determine what was not controlled. In most cases it is marestail or horseweed, and it needs to be controlled before you plant because there are not effective postemergence herbicides for it (unless you are using Liberty Link soybeans and use Liberty 280). It’s too late to rely on 2,4-D to control marestail because you need the 1 qt rate to provide effective control. The 1 qt rate of most 2,4-D products require 4 weeks before planting and in too many places sensitive plants have emerged. If you are on an appropriate soil type, Sharpen, with all the required adjuvants, is an option (see the label). Sharpen is not an option for coarse-textured soils because it also needs 4 weeks between application and soybean planting. Liberty or Ignite can be used, but it works best on days with full sun shine and requires excellent coverage (at least 20 g/A and medium droplet size). A chlorimuron-based herbicide is another option, but you need to use rates that will provide good suppression/control. Chlorimuron rates equivalent to 1.5 oz of Classic is needed (see table below). In most situations, the chlorimuron-based products should be used with a burndown herbicide (glyphosate or Gramoxone) and refer to their label for adjuvants.

Herbicide Rate oz wt/A Classic Rate Other
Valor XLT 3.6 1.5 Valor
Envive 4.0 1.5 Valor + Harmony
Canopy 3.5 1.5 Metrbuzin
Canopy EX 1.6 1.5 Express

Agronomic Crop Insects – May 4, 2012

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Joanne Whalen, Extension IPM Specialist; jwhalen@udel.edu

Alfalfa
Since weevil populations have been heavier this year and in some cases fields were not sprayed, be sure to check for both adults and larvae within a week of cutting. Feeding from both stages can hold back re-growth. After cutting, there needs to be enough “stubble” heat to control the weevils with a cutting. A stubble treatment will be needed if you find 2 or more weevils per stem and the population levels remain steady.

Field Corn
The recent cooler wet weather in combination with an earlier slug hatch due to the warm winter and March has resulted in an increase in slug damage this past week. We have seen a number of fields with economic levels of slug damage, especially in fields with heavy no-till covers and a history of problems. Options to reduce damage and allow plants to grow ahead of the damage include the use of Deadline M-Ps (or other available metaldehyde baits), Lannate LV ( DuPont issued a 2ee recommendation for slug management in field corn in DE, MD, PA, VA and WV in 2010) or 30% Urea Ammonium Nitrate (UAN) fertilizer. In years past, 30% UAN applied at night when the plants are dry and there is no wind has resulted in variable levels of success (the rate used in past years was 20 gallons per acre of 30% UAN on corn in the spike to one-leaf stage and the mix was cut 50/50 with water to reduce – but not eliminate — plant injury). The best control with the Deadline M-Ps has been observed when there is at least one day of sunny weather after an application. In general slugs stop feeding in 2-3 hours. Although we only have one year of research data with Lannate LV, growers using it this season have reported that they feel it is helping plants to stay ahead of the damage. We are doing a trial again this year to look at application timing. Please see the following link for the Lannate LV 2ee recommendation: http://www.cdms.net/LDat/ld183004.pdf. Remember that when it comes to slug management all of the available control tactics generally reduce the slug activity – buying time to enable the crop to outgrow the problem.

Small Grains
We continue to find armyworms and cereal leaf beetles in barley and wheat fields that were not treated, so be sure to check fields as soon as it is dry enough in the day to do a good job scouting. Population levels remain variable throughout the state so scouting fields will be the only way to determine if an economic level is present. Depending on the temperature, cereal leaf beetle larvae will feed for up to 3 weeks. Research from Virginia and North Carolina indicates that the greatest damage can occur between flowering and the soft dough stage so continue to sample carefully for this insect. Although armyworm can attack both wheat and barley, they can quickly cause significant losses in barley. We are also starting to see an increase in sawfly adults laying eggs in wheat fields so hatch may be delayed. Continue to sample for sawflies, especially in areas with a history of problems. Before treatment, be sure to check all labels for the days allowed between last application and harvest.

Air Pollution Damage to Transplants in the Greenhouse

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Gordon Johnson, Extension Vegetable & Fruit Specialist; gcjohn@udel.edu

We have recently seen air pollution damage to greenhouse transplants. This can occur where coal or wood burning stoves are used and exhaust escapes when loading, where temporary unvented heaters are used in greenhouses, where heat exchangers in vented heaters have cracks, where exhaust pipes are leaking, or where fumes from burn piles or other sources are drawn into houses.

In fuel combustion, noxious gases can be produced if combustion is not complete. This can include: ethylene, sulfur dioxide, nitrous oxide and carbon monoxide. Even a clean burning furnace can have problems in airtight plastic greenhouses in cold periods where heaters are in constant operation. The level of oxygen can be depleted over several hours of continuous heating thus starving the combustion process of adequate oxygen and contributing harmful gasses.

During the combustion process, sulfur in fuel sources is converted to sulfur dioxide. If this leaks into the greenhouse and combines with the moisture there, sulfuric acid is formed. Low levels of sulfur dioxide may result in flecking and premature leaf drop. Higher levels can cause severe leaf burn, especially on young leaves.

Ethylene is a clear, odorless gas is a byproduct of the combustion of fuels. Ethylene can be damaging at levels as low as 0.05 ppm and even short exposures can cause leaf distortion, abortion of flower buds, defoliation and chlorosis. For more information on ethylene in greenhouses see the past article by Jerry Brust titled ‘Greenhouse Air Pollution Caused by Ethylene’ in WCU 17:6.

Disinfecting Flats for Transplants

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Gordon Johnson, Extension Vegetable & Fruit Specialist; gcjohn@udel.edu

We have seen some problems where excess bleach used for disinfecting greenhouse flats caused damage to transplants. The following is some information from the University of Massachusetts on using bleach for disinfecting flats: “When used properly, chlorine is an effective disinfectant and has been used for many years by growers. A solution of chlorine bleach and water is short-lived and the half-life (time required for 50 percent reduction in strength) of a chlorine solution is only two hours. After two hours, only one-half as much chlorine is present as was present at first. After four hours, only one-fourth is there, and so on. To ensure the effectiveness of chlorine solutions, it should be prepared fresh just before each use. The concentration normally used is one part of household bleach (5.25 percent sodium hypochlorite) to nine parts of water, giving a final strength of 0.5 percent. Chlorine is corrosive. Repeated use of chlorine solutions may be harmful to plastics or metals. Objects to be sanitized with chlorine require 30 minutes of soaking and then should be rinsed with water. Bleach should be used in a well-ventilated area. It should also be noted that bleach is phytotoxic to some plants.”

Do not use straight bleach for disinfecting flats. Bleach contains sodium and chloride. Excess chlorine can be toxic to some plants. With excess chlorine, plants may wilt when soil moisture seems adequate, foliage has an abnormal dark blue/green color and individual leaves are dull and leathery, with scorching on leaf edges and premature yellowing of the oldest leaves. Sodium toxicity is seen as marginal leaf burn on the oldest leaves.

Inspect Watermelon and Cantaloupe Transplants, New Bacterial Fruit Blotch Factsheet

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Gordon Johnson, Extension Vegetable & Fruit Specialist; gcjohn@udel.edu

As watermelon and cantaloupe transplanting continues on Delmarva, growers are reminded to inspect plants before they are transplanted into the field for signs of disease including Bacterial Fruit Blotch, Gummy Stem Blight, and Angular Leaf Spot.

Kate Everts and Gordon Johnson have put together a new factsheet on Bacterial Fruit Blotch, which will be of interest to watermelon growers. It is available online here: http://agdev.anr.udel.edu/weeklycropupdate/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/BacterialFruitBlotchFactsheet.pdf