Issue No. 19, Article 4/July 29, 2005
Precipitation on Thursday, July 21, was widespread throughout the region, with most areas receiving from 0.8 inch to over an inch. Also, precipitation occurred throughout the region on Tuesday, July 26. Soybeans have responded very well to the rainfall with continued growth. Rain also has alleviated the stress and damage in soybeans from spider mite infestations.
During the weeks of July 10 and 17, numerous cornfields were treated for silk clipping by corn rootworm beetles, and some soybean fields were treated for spider mite infestations.
Just a reminder that the annual Field Day at the U of I Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center, Shabbona, will be held Tuesday, August 2; tours begin at 4 p.m., and the last tour leaves at 5 p.m. Topics presented by Extension specialists include soybean rust fungicide research, corn rootworm and soybean aphid updates, timing and effectiveness for herbicide programs, factors contributing to high soybean yields, and soybean row spacing and seeding efficiency. The research farm can be reached by going 1 mile east of Shabbona on Route 30, then 5-1/2 miles north on University Road.
High temperatures this week did not benefit crop production. Light precipitation ranging from .2 to .8 inch on July 26 and 27 will help crops.
Many growers have checked corn pollination, and results are highly variable with location, planting date, hybrid, and other factors. Corn prospects appear to range from 50% to 100% of average. Many corn ears have "tipped back" and look to be small in diameter. In general, southeastern Illinois has had better growing conditions than southwestern Illinois.
Soybeans have responded well to improved soil moisture.
Japanese beetles remain abundant. Ron Hines caught more than 45,000 in traps located in Pope and Massac counties.
Remember the Dixon Springs Ag Center Field Day on August 4.
Rainfall totals for the past 2 weeks range from a couple of tenths to over 2 inches. Needless to say, those on the short end are still waiting for some sign of crop improvement. The heat of the past week coupled with excessively dry soils caused crop conditions to take a turn for the worse over the past 7 to 10 days. Each day without rain is reducing yields, as tip kernels are aborting. Planting date differences of 3 to 4 weeks are very noticeable, with ear size reductions on corn planted late April into May. Corn planted during the first 2 weeks of April is dented. Some minor leaf disease has been reported. Japanese beetle and corn rootworm beetles can still be found, but at this time no one is too concerned with their presence in corn.
The soybean crop is continuing to bloom. Areas that experienced rainfall are reporting considerable new growth. In areas that didn't receive the rains, pods that are still on the plant consist of two and three beans, and plants have been in a holding pattern for several weeks, with no new growth. Spraying to control spider mite outbreaks is occurring across the region. At least one field has been sprayed to control soybean aphid where populations were above threshold. Downey mildew is reported in some counties in the southern part of the region.
Many pastures are not producing much in the way of forage. Some growers are feeding hay and making plans for emergency forage supplies (chopping corn for silage).