Issue No. 16, Article 4/July 9, 2004
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.
Field activities last week focused primarily on postemergence herbicide applications to late-planted soybean fields and baling hay. Corn is just beginning to tassel in the southern area of the region; however, by July 7, there were very few tasseled fields in the central and northern area of the region. As has been the trend for the growing season, to date, few insect problems have been reported during the last few weeks. However, due to relatively early planting and above-average precipitation since planting, producers are encouraged to evaluate at-risk cornfields for possible rootworm larvae feeding.
Jim Morrison, Extension educator, wants to remind those interested in the forage industry that the Illinois Forage Expo will be held on July 14, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Frank and Homer Doll dairy farm near Greenville in Bond County. Further details are available here.
A fairly quiet start to the pest season has come to a close, with varied evidence of rootworm injury throughout the area. Rootworm injury has occurred in first-year corn in some areas, in continuous corn in some areas, and in both cropping systems in others. The first-year corn rootworm variant has undoubtedly made progress in the west-central region this year. Reports vary from "occasional plants" to "entire fields" exhibiting economic levels of injury. As noted, continuous cornfields have shown their share of injury as well and have allowed those outside the variant's expanded territory to become more familiar with this pest. Such injury has apparently contributed to a few cases of lodged corn and will likely contribute to other cases very soon.
Japanese beetles continue to generate concerns about silk clipping. Some portions of the region have been spraying fields for this pest, while other portions have expressed surprise over a less impressive Japanese beetle turnout compared with 2002 and 2003.
Soybeans are showing some aboveground symptoms consistent with soybean cyst nematode injury. Foliar disease observations continue.
Northern portions of the region will soon be as tasseled as central and southern portions of the region. More than one person has commented on the generally good appearance of both crops, although some observers note evidence of moisture stress in beans.
The second cutting of hay continues, and a few wheat fields are still being cut.