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Issue No. 22, Article 7/September 1, 2006

Regional Reports

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.

Northern Illinois

Several widespread thunderstorms have gone through the northern region during the past two weeks, with some areas receiving 3 inches and most at least 1 inch. Some areas received heavy, rapid rainfall on August 25 and 28, which resulted in rapid surface runoff.

Several Extension educators have reported increased incidence of sudden death syndrome in soybeans and gray leaf spot in corn. Also, white mold disease is evident in soybeans in some areas. Soybean aphids are still present, but populations have declined during the last week.

Jim Morrison, Extension educator, reminds growers that for hay fields that will be in production in 2007, the last harvest during the growing season should be made by September 5 for the northern quarter of the state.

West-Central Illinois

Varying amounts of rainfall, ranging from 1/2 inch to over 3 inches, occurred during the first part of the week.

Most producers are completed with silage harvest, although some corn has not matured enough yet. Those fields should be ready soon. Most cornfields are at or very near black layer.

A few producers have begun to harvest corn in fields that died prematurely due to lack of moisture. Concerns about lodging (which has occurred in varying degrees already in these fields) and low moisture (low 20s) brought out the combines. Yield reports are varying, with monitors showing from 5 to 200-plus bushels. Several plots have been harvested, with yields ranging from 100 to 150 bushels per acre. Some of the more stressed fields are reporting test weights in the low 50s.

Gray leaf spot is not uncommon in many fields.

Soybean maturity ranges from R5 to R7. There are a number of small (3/4-inch) pods on the later-maturing plants that will certainly benefit from the recent rains. SDS and charcoal rot can be found in many parts of the region. In some cases, plants exhibiting both symptoms are in the same field and next to each other. Septoria leaf spot and downy mildew are also noted in some fields.

Soybean aphids are common in some areas but have yet to reach economic levels.

In those areas that have received rainfall during August, pasture growth has been noted and welcomed. Other areas are still feeding a high percentage of the cattle herds with hay.

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