Issue No. 2, Article 12/April 1, 2004
Regional ReportsNorthern Illinois
Some fieldwork occurred prior to the middle of the week of March 22. Precipitation at that time and continuing through the past week has stopped most field activity. Tasks that did occur focused on dry fertilizer application, nitrogen application on wheat, and limited alfalfa and oat seeding.
Alfalfa and wheat appear to have survived the winter very well. Jim Morrison, Extension educator, reported wheat in the RockfordFreeport area at Feekes stages 3 and 4, and alfalfa height at 2 to 3 inches.
Widespread thunderstorms during the past week have brought fieldwork to a halt. Prior to the rain, field operations had included anhydrous ammonia applications and some seed bed preparation. Along with the rain, these storms brought this year's first intense captures of black cutworm moths. Ron Hines, at the Dixon Springs Agricultural Center, reports intense black cutworm moth captures in Pulaski and St. Clair counties, with projected cutting dates around the last week of April.
Most of the wheat acreage has had nitrogen applied and appears to be in excellent condition. Wheat growth stage ranges from Feekes 5 to 6, depending on location and planting date. If Harmony hasn't been applied yet, it needs to be applied very soon.
Winter annual weeds are becoming more obvious, with henbit and purple deadnettle beginning to bloom in fields that did not have fall herbicide applications made.
Some corn was planted on March 18 to 20, but heavy rains and cold weather have stopped all fieldwork since then. Tillage equipment and planters are hooked up and will be in the fields as soon as weather conditions permit.
With the recent rains, wheat and alfalfa fields have greened up considerably. Almost all nitrogen has been applied to wheat, and some Harmony for garlic control has also been applied in the southern part of the region. Alfalfa plant height measurements will begin in a couple of weeks and will be recorded on the PEAQ Web site. Check the Web site to determine when first harvest should begin.
Black cutworm moth traps have been distributed around the region, and "intense" capture numbers will be reported in future issues of the Bulletin.