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Issue No. 19, Article 6/August 3, 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.

Southern Illinois

We have transitioned from good growing conditions to hot, dry ones. Soil moisture is variable, with everyone needing rain and some select areas approaching disaster status.

Much of the corn is in dough to early dent stage; regular crop soybeans are attempting to fill pods. Double-crop soybeans have just started to bloom.

Japanese beetles are still feeding, although not to earlier levels. Robert Bellm has found a few populations of soybean aphids in southwestern Illinois.

Remember the Illinois Wheat Forum on Monday, August 13, in Highland. Contact Lowell Lenchow (lenchow@ilfb.org) for details.

West-Central Illinois

The weather has turned warmer and drier, with temperatures reaching the mid-90s. Crops in the west side of the region are starting to show some stress symptoms. The eastern side of the region is looking a little better but will need rain soon with these temperatures.

Corn is 10 days to 2 weeks ahead of its normal growth for this time of year, with most in the late-milk to mid-dough stage. Airplanes overhead have been quite common over the last several weeks; 80% to 95% of the corn was sprayed with fungicides, depending on the area.

Soybeans are well into the R3 or R4 stage of growth. Many foliar diseases can be found, especially in the lower canopy. Soybean aphids are present in many fields, but there have been no reports of threshold populations yet. However, farmers should be scouting regularly, as aphid populations can double in as little as 3 to 4 days. A few fields are getting second applications of Roundup to get some escaping weeds. There is talk about soybean rust's having been found in Arkansas, so keep scouting for this pest as well, and stay updated by watching the soybean rust Web sites.

The third cutting of alfalfa will be in full swing this week with the higher temperatures and lower chances of rain.

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