Forage research indicates that, although alfalfa is considered to have good cold temperature tolerance, minor frost damage may occur when plants are exposed to air temperatures slightly below freezing for several hours, and more severe damage will be seen when temperatures drop below 25°F for four or more hours.
South Dakota farmers can monitor South Dakota basis for corn, soybeans, spring wheat and hard red winter wheat in their region relative to export bids and historical basis ranges using the SDSU Extension Grain Basis Tool.
Low temperatures during the early morning hours of May 9–11, 2020 may have had detrimental effects on winter wheat in some areas of South Dakota. However, cooler spring temperatures that have slowed the winter wheat development this year may have actually been beneficial to S.D. producers, as later-maturing wheat is not as susceptible to injury from freezing temperatures.
May 22, 2020
One of the many challenges producers face each year is weed control. Leafy spurge, in particular, can be difficult to manage.
While research has shown that pollinators, specifically honey bees, can’t survive on dandelion pollen alone, this doesn’t mean that the dandelions aren’t still important for pollinators.
Tan spot and powdery mildew as well as barley yellow dwarf were found developing at low levels in winter wheat fields scouted the week of May 24, 2020.
When considering weed control in tree plantings, the focus is generally placed on the control of herbaceous vegetation (grasses and forbs), particularly during the establishment phase. This focus is appropriate since control of herbaceous weeds is generally critical to establish a successful planting. As these plantings mature, providing perching sites for birds, another weed problem develops – the establishment of competing woody vegetation. These woody weeds are often left unchecked for many years because they look “natural” in a windbreak or other area of trees.
Activity of alfalfa weevils has been documented in many areas of South Dakota during the last week. At this time, the entire state has accumulated enough degree days for alfalfa weevils to be active.
The 2018 and 2019 alfalfa weevil populations were relatively low, and as a result, we didn’t receive very many calls regarding this pest during those years. However, 2020 has been quite a bit different, and alfalfa weevil populations seem to be much higher.