Issue No. 8, Article 13/May 18, 2007
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.
Corn planting is 95% or more complete; most of the region was able to be in the field continuously from May 1 through May 11. Light precipitation occurred on May 12, but field activity resumed in many areas by the next day. Scattered thunderstorms are predicted for midweek throughout the region. Other activities during the past week have focused on soybean planting and preemergence herbicide application on corn fields. Soybean planting completion estimates are at 50%.
A reminder that the first session of the 2007 Crops Training Center summer sessions will be Friday, June 8, from 9:00 am to noon at the Northern Illinois Agronomy Research Center, Shabbona. Dr. Carl Bradley, University of Illinois Extension specialist, will present information on managing corn and soybean diseases and discuss fungicide efficacy data for both crops. Dr. Bob Kemerait, University of Georgia, will share via distance technology the soybean rust situation in Georgia and discuss their fungicide efficacy data in controlling rust. Pre-registration is requested by June 1; contact Greg Clark, firstname.lastname@example.org, Whiteside County Extension Unit, 815-772-4075. The cost is $25 per person, and Certified Crop Adviser CEUs have been applied for.
Wheat heading and flowering are essentially complete. There were two or more rainfall events in the last week, and head scab has been added to the list of potential problems for the 2007 wheat crop.
Most but not all of the corn is planted. Many fields have alternated between too wet and just about dry enough to work. Emerged corn is growing and looks fairly good. Soybean planting has been fairly active, though only a limited number of fields have emerged.
Growers have been attempting hay harvest when weather permits. Drier, more favorable weather is in the forecast and should allow field work to progress.
Most of the corn crop has been planted across the area. Fields range in size from VE to V4, with some fields being planted just over the weekend in areas that remained wet during the spring. A few fields have shown up with bleached corn plants due to herbicide applications and environmental conditions. Cutworms have been a problem in no-till corn and have been sprayed in some places.
A lot of soybeans were planted during the past week, with the earliest fields having already emerged. There is concern that bean leaf beetles may be a problem in some of these fields. No rescue treatments have occurred to date. Reports suggest that soybean acreage is down at least 20% this year in areas across this region.
Matt Montgomery, Sangamon-Menard Extension crops systems educator, continues to observe impressive but subeconomic levels of armyworm in wheat. He notes that instars for armyworm are variable and encourages producers to continue to scout. Wheat has already headed, and problems with twisted heads have been noticeable. This is likely due to cold weather injury. Powdery mildew, rust, and Septoria can be found in fields as well. Some producers who were concerned about their wheat have either destroyed the crop or removed it for livestock and are planting corn.
Alfalfa weevils have continued to cause concern in some areas, with fields being treated. Some alfalfa and alfalfa/grass hay have already been harvested.