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Issue No. 18, Article 7/July 27, 2007

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

Generally the corn and soybean crops are doing very well throughout the northern region. Precipitation during the week of July 16 ranged from 1 inch to nearly 5 inches in some areas. A significant portion of the region received over 2.5 inches of rainfall. Moderate temperatures and adequate soil moisture have contributed to nearly ideal field conditions during the entire corn pollination process. Despite concerns prior to pollination, no reports have been received of serious silk clipping by corn rootworm beetles or Japanese beetles.

Several Extension educators report that soybean aphid populations have been increasing over the past three weeks. Selected soybean fields scouted for soybean aphids during the past week in Ogle, Stephenson, and JoDaviess counties have indicated nearly 100% of plants infested, but most remained below economic thresholds. Also, few predators, such as the Asian lady beetle, are present compared to the past several years. Due to optimum weather conditions for aphid development and few predators present, growers are encouraged to regularly scout for soybean aphids. Extension educators have been monitoring western bean cutworm traps for over a month, with moth catches quite variable from county to county. To date, the moth traps have caught more armyworm moths by far than western bean cutworm moths. Potato leafhoppers continue to be a problem in some alfalfa fields.

Wheat harvest has been completed. Alfalfa harvest has been occurring this week.

Southern Illinois

We are still enjoying good growing conditions in many areas. Rain is now needed to continue grain fill.

Most corn and soybeans continue to look good to excellent. Most corn is now R3 to late R4. Group II soybeans are approaching R5, while Group V soybeans are R1.

Japanese beetles are still feeding. They have chased the corn silk all the way down to the ear tip kernels.

Remember the University of Illinois Dixon Springs Agronomy Research Center Field Day on Thursday, August 2. Tours begin at 8 a.m., and lunch is provided.

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