Crops News

Ag PhD Crop Scouting Reports — May 23, 2017


The Ag PhD Crop Scouting Reports are supplied by contributors to Hefty Seed Co., based in Baltic, South Dakota. Find more online at and



Augusta, AR
Soybeans planted the last couple of days on 7 day-old stale beds may have a little bit of grass get up before the pre got activated. Don’t panic and give up on your pre; it is activated now and we will clean up any escapes with the first post application. If we didn’t run paraquat with the pre and spray dirt, we can’t blame the pre. — Joey York

Pre-emerge herbicides are activated now in the soybeans we planted this week. We will overlap another residual when we spray our first post application to keep the pigweeds and grass held off until we can close canopy. We should be able to put more rice to the flood this week. — Joey York



Buhl, ID
With some of the alfalfa getting harvested and moved off the field, it’s a great time to go in and apply any foliar nutrients your crop is short on, which may just be some micronutrients. Tissue testing is a great way to know what nutrients your crop is lacking. Take samples on the same day each week for the most accurate analysis. — Van Wiebe



Georgetown, IL
Some no-till growers want to replant corn acres that have poor stand counts. They have talked about eradicating the existing stand chemically. Remember to follow the label and observe plant back restrictions. — Tyler Smith

Princeton, IL
Some farmers in our area have been experimenting with RyzUp SmartGrass, a plant growth regulator, on their corn crops this spring. From their experience, the gibberellic acid that RyzUp contains has stimulated corn grown even during the cool and sometimes cold weather. This has allowed the RyzUp-treated corn to have a healthier, taller plant with more root development. — Matt Denton

It’s easy to get in a hurry when switching sprayers between crops. Taking your time and using the appropriate tank cleaner will make the job easier and reduce the risk of future crop injury. — John Becker

Soon we will be spraying burndown for soybeans. Fields have become weedy and some weeds are getting very large. Remember that 2,4-D requires 5-7 days of waiting before planting soybeans. An option to 2,4-D some people use is adding 1 oz/acre of Sharpen with your Roundup or glyphosate. Growers like it because there is no waiting to plant behind Sharpen at this rate, it has residual on weeds like pigweed, and it is effective controlling Roundup resistant weeds. — Mike Denton



Sheldon, IA
If you have pre-mixed products on the farm like Halex GT or Resicore that have been sitting around for a while, agitate the product well before use because it most likely separated. Agitation can be done with a motor on top of the shuttle with a paddle in the tank or just suck out of the bottom of the shuttle and pump back into the top of the tank. — Adam Sauer

With all the moisture and the cooler temperatures we have been having lately, don’t be surprised if you see yellow, and in some occasions purple, coloring in the leaves. The lack of green in the leaves is because of not enough sunlight to cause photosynthesis. The purple discoloration is caused by the colder temperatures trapping the sugars in the leaves. Even though these may look like nutrient deficiencies, most will clear up once the heat returns and the ground warms back up. If you are still having doubts and concerns, pull a couple tissue samples and send them in for evaluation. — Nathan Kloft



Breckenridge, MN
Planting a cover crop like barley over your sugar beets is a great way to protect the seedlings from being exposed to harsh winds. Just make sure to kill it off once the beets get big enough. — Tia Johnson

Fairmont, MN
While out scouting fields, I have noticed young corn plants with purpling leaves. The cooler temperatures have slowed down growth and the uptake of nutrients. This causes the plant to have more sugars then it can utilize. Don’t worry, after a few warm days the plants will turn green again. — Hans Hinrichsen

Hancock, MN
There are sugar beet fields in the area that have light feeding from cutworms. At this point, the feeding is pretty light and in isolated areas in fields. As the days and heat units accumulate, the cutworm larvae that are doing the feeding will grow in size and numbers. The larger larvae will be able to cut off plants very soon. Do some extra scouting this week to evaluate and consider adding 6 oz/acre of a product such as Asana XL to your spray tank while spraying glyphosate for burning down your cover crop. — Adam Gibson

Tissue testing is a great tool to find out if nutrients are getting into your plant from the soil. In corn, V2 is a perfect time to start. The best strategy for tissue testing is to pull a test each week on the same day at around the same time. This will give you the most consistent and reliable results. — Aaron Giese

Janesville, MN
Giant ragweed is becoming a problem in fields that are going to be sweet corn this year. With the wet conditions, many fields have not been worked yet and some of the weeds are getting large. Although not ideal, a product like Gramoxone SL 2.0 at 3-4 pts/acre is an option on weeds that are over 6 inches tall. Add either NIS at 1 qt/100 gal or better yet MSO/COC at 1 gal/100 gal. — Josh Bruns

LeRoy, MN
Black cutworm is a pest to keep a close eye on as moth flights have been heavy in areas. The moths come up from the south in April and May and are attracted to green fields. That means cover crop and no-till fields are affected first. One black cutworm larvae can cut up to 4 corn plants in its life cycle, and they usually feed at night or during overcast days. A soil insecticide may control black cutworm especially if surface or T-banded, but an application of a foliar insecticide is very inexpensive and will give you the quick results you need. — Grant Lunning

Marshall, MN
Soybeans can stay under water from 48-96 hours without too much loss of stand. Cool and overcast weather will allow the most time before significant damage does occur. Seed treatments will not lengthen the time but they will help fight off the diseases once the soil dries out. — Mike Homandberg

Pre-emerge herbicide sprayed on soybeans before the beans emerged seems to be working well. It’s been cold so not many weeds have germinated. If you did not get your pre’s on and your soybeans are up, you may want to consider using, Outlook, Dual, Warrant, or even Warrant Ultra if waterhemp is starting to emerge. — Dave Timmerman

Olivia, MN
This is a good time to check the emergence of your crops. If you applied a seed treatment or did an in-furrow application as a trial, check to see if it made a difference on the emergence and write down your observations. More than likely you will see a yield difference in the fall, and you will have your notes from planting and scouting to compare which products gave your farm the best ROI. — John Scheibel

If you have hard water, add ammonium sulfate (AMS) to your tank to help with burndown. The sulfate attaches to the salts in your water so they do not restrict your herbicide from entering the plant. The ammonium tricks the plant into taking in more herbicide by making it think it found a nitrogen source. 17 lbs/100 gal of water is a good rate with most herbicides. — Tony Hagen

Thief River Falls, MN
If you have pasture, silage, or other forage crops and want to increase dry matter production, many growers are having great results with RyzUp SmartGrass. RyzUp is a sprayable growth regulator that increases dry matter production when cooler weather limits growth. A rate of 0.5 oz/acre at V3-V6 in silage corn or when daily temperatures are between 40-60 degrees in pastures and other forage grasses will give you best results. — Rachel Klein

With the recent rains we have had, the crop and the weeds will really take off over the next week. Spring wheat spraying is right around the corner; scout your fields this week and identify what weeds are in your fields to help you determine what herbicides you will need to spray in the following weeks. — Jordan Swanson

Winthrop, MN
When you are spraying your herbicides, insecticides, or fungicides, always check for rainfast intervals. Many products can require application up to 4 hours before rain. — Dean Christiansen

When you switch spraying one crop to the other, be sure to do a good job on tank clean out. A popular product growers use is Erase. — Tyler Gasow

As we are able to get back into fields to finish up soybean planting, consider inoculating your soybeans. Producers have seen the largest yield bump from inoculating beans when they are planted later. With all of the rain we have seen – and likely leaching to go with it – the soybeans will need all the help they can get to find nitrogen. This is a cheap seed treatment that we have seen result in up to a 10 bushel gain when planted late in the season. — Matt Vogel



Bertrand, MO
A major portion of soybean planting will be taking place this week. Several acres are still affected by flood waters along the Mississippi river in our area. River stages are falling and planting will follow in those areas shortly after. — Albert Duenne

Some farmers are applying a burndown for their soybean fields right now. An option with excellent burndown and residual on resistant weeds many growers are using is a tankmix of Gramoxone at 2 pts/acre with some Zidua Pro at 6 oz/acre. — Albert Duenne

Hayti, MO
Earlier planted cotton is beginning to shape up and many are making plans for the first post-application of Engenia and Outlook. — Danny Stevens



Sidney, MT
With our drier conditions, I have received a few questions about herbicide tie-up. From my experience, dust tie-up does not affect pre-emergent herbicides. LV6 or dicamba also don’t seem to lose much efficacy. Certain products like glyphosate tend to lose some ability in dusty conditions, especially in wheel track areas. In dry conditions, the plant is under stress and creates a waxy buildup to protect itself. Glyphosate rates should be increased by at least 25% to help with tie-up and help penetrate the wax on the leaf. — Chester Hill



Laurel, NE
Make sure to check your alfalfa for weevil larvae and cutworms after you take the first cutting. There are many inexpensive insecticides to choose from. Growers are finding this to be an ideal time to spray and help promote good regrowth. — Kody Urwiler

West Point, NE
Some growers need to get a corn pre on. Make sure that if the crop is coming up you are watching what surfactants you use. You can damage little plants when they are in these delicate stages. — Jared Steffensmeier



Lisbon, ND
The time to spray spring wheat in the area is quickly approaching. Be sure to scout your fields so you know if you need grass control or just broadleaf control. This could be an easy way to save several dollars per acre by spraying the correct herbicide. — Spencer Schultz

Mohall, ND
It’s soon time to spray field peas. Growers in this area plan to use Varisto at 1 pt/acre, Select at 6 oz/acre, and MSO at 1 gal/100 gal water. — Ron Hefta



Aberdeen, SD
As I am out in the fields, 95% of the corn is up and growing, and 80% of the beans have sprouted in our area. Some of the beans are sprouting as soon as 6 hours after planting. — Justin Hanson

We are starting to see green foxtail in our spring wheat. If you didn’t get a pre-emerge herbicide down, there are some good options post. One option is Parity (Puma) that growers like because it controls green foxtail with the lowest labeled rate of 6.4 fl oz/acre. — Kalen Kjellsen

Baltic, SD
There have been some alfalfa weevil larvae reported in the area. Alfalfa weevil larvae are yellowish-green to green with black heads and a distinct white line down the center of their backs. These larvae can be very destructive to alfalfa. Thresholds vary on plant height and value of the hay per ton, but luckily the cost of treatment is very inexpensive. Scout your alfalfa fields and contact your local agronomist for treatment options. — Lee Fischer

Centerville, SD
I have checked a few corn fields recently and stands are off to a good start. A few hill areas received some light damage from wind. While it’s wet in most areas around here, check your stand counts on the corn you have out there. If you have 30-inch rows, count the number of viable plants in 17.5 feet. Do this in a few different places to get a good field average. — Peter Strom

Freeman, SD
I have been hearing a lot of guys saying that their corn has emerged but they didn’t get their pre-emerge herbicide on. Make sure you check the label on the product you are using as some of them can be applied early post-emerge. If the product you have cannot be applied post-emerge, you will want to switch products so you make sure you get your residual on. — Lee Dockendorf

Gettysburg, SD
Make sure that no crop is cracking through the ground before you spray your pre-emerge herbicides in soybeans. Safe options to switch to if beans are up include Warrant and Anthem. — Kyle Hawkinson

Huron, SD
With the wet weather, it would be a good time to check over your sprayers. Clean all screens, flush booms, and calibrate your tips. — Norland Hofer

I was asked this morning what I use to kill alfalfa after the first cutting. A popular option this year is to plant Xtend soybeans. Let the alfalfa regrow a couple inches, then apply 32 oz/acre of RT Master and 22 oz/acre Xtendimax for a burndown with the ability to use Xtend technology to pick up any escapes. — Garritt Dykstra

Watertown, SD
If you are going to be spraying pastures fairly soon, an option for weeds like curly dock or burdock would be GrazonNext HL at 1.5 pts/acre. If you need to pickup wormwood or Canada thistle, up your rate to 2 pts/acre. — Jack Beutler

When you get done spraying with Balance Flexx, make sure you rinse your tank out. Use a tank cleaner such as Erase at a rate of 1 qt/100 gals of water. — Russ Werning

With the little bit of down time we have, getting all the stuff you need now is a good idea. This includes your post herbicides, fungicides, surfactants, and tank cleaner. Then you can go spray right away and not have to wait. — Beau Wensing



Quincy, WA
We are seeing an explosion of stripe rust in eastern Washington with the unseasonably cool, wet weather that has hit the region. The stripe rust is spreading fast; be sure to check your fields daily if possible, or at minimum every other day, so things don’t get out of hand. Growers that put in fungicide at herbicide application are not in the clear. Most residual chemistry has worn off by now and it’s time for a second application the minute you start seeing infected flag leaves. This is too good of a crop to not keep it protected. Propiconizole is a cheap option to buy enough time until the high temperature adult plant (HTAP) resistance kicks in. — Devin Moon

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