Issue No. 15, Article 3/July 2, 2009
Extension center educators, unit educators, and unit assistants in northern, west-central, east-central, and southern Illinois prepare regional reports to provide more localized insight into pest situations and crop conditions in Illinois. The reports will keep you up to date on situations in field and forage crops as they develop throughout the season. The regions have been defined broadly to include the agricultural statistics districts as designated by the Illinois Agricultural Statistics Service, with slight modifications:
- North (Northwest and Northeast districts, plus Stark and Marshall counties)
- West-central (West and West Southwest districts, and Peoria, Woodford, Tazewell, Mason, Menard, and Logan counties from the Central district)
- East-central (East and East Southeast districts [except Marion, Clay, Richland, and Lawrence counties], McLean, DeWitt, and Macon counties from the Central district)
- South (Southwest and Southeast districts, and Marion, Clay, Richland, and Lawrence counties from the East Southeast district)
We hope these reports will provide additional benefits for staying current as the season progresses.
Considerable growth in corn and soybeans has occurred over the last two weeks. Field activities have focused on postemergence herbicide spraying, cultivation, and some nitrogen sidedressing applications. Temperatures have been cooler this week, and windy conditions have hindered spraying of postemergence herbicides. The west-central portion of the region received 0.1 to 1.5 inches of rainfall on June 27. Overall, corn color has improved, but numerous fields exhibit uneven plant height. There have been no reports to date of insect infestations in corn or soybeans. Extension educators have begun monitoring insect traps for western bean cutworm moths, fall armyworm moths, European corn borer moths, and Japanese beetles.
Some producers have harvested a second cutting of alfalfa, while others were just making the first harvest last week. Jim Morrison, crop systems extension educator, reports some potato leaf hopper infestations in alfalfa.
Wet weather has been followed by hot and dry. Some fields were almost to the point of moisture stress and leaves were rolling prior to the past weekend's scattered showers, which brought anywhere from 0.4 inch to over 1 inch of rain. High winds have caused some corn to lean. The pleasant growing conditions have caused corn to respond dramatically, but fields look a little haphazard, as height and color are not consistent. Other practices in corn include sidedressing NH3 and spraying for weeds. Several incidents have occurred in the region where glyphosate was applied by air to non-Roundup Ready corn.
Some growers have still not planted or are just getting the opportunity to plant soybeans this week. Growth stages of beans in the ground are VE to V3, and in some early-planted fields plants are just beginning to flower.
Wheat harvest is ongoing, and straw is getting baled. In some areas, yield will be impacted by rust and scab diseases. Yields from the Quincy area have been reported between 40 and 60 bushels per acre, but test weights have been in excess of 56 pounds.
Hay that was cut may have laid in the field until conditions were favorable to bale. Some producers reported poor quality because cut hay was too wet to bale in a timely manner. The first cutting in alfalfa and some grass occurred well past prime cutting time. Some roadsides are also being mowed for hay.
Japanese beetle populations have been reported in Montgomery, Sangamon, Adams, and Brown counties.