On April 16, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center released their climate outlook for May and the coming three-month period of May through July. There is a lot of uncertainty in the temperature outlook for the next one-to-three months in the Northern Plains Region.
Spring is a busy time for South Dakota farmers and ranchers with planting, calving, and other field preparations. Soil sampling and fertilizing pastures, alfalfa, or other forages might be overlooked.
In South Dakota, the spring can come with a wide range of temperature fluctuations. This will affect the performance of burndown herbicides. Depending upon the target weed, type of herbicide and application rate, there will likely be decreased weed control in cooler temperatures.
The goals of applying any crop protection products include: increasing effectiveness, mitigating drift, and maximizing profits. We will focus on mitigating drift, even though all three interact with each other.
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.
A combination of tillage, no residue, and lack of crop canopy can lead to severe erosion and topsoil loss in the face of extreme weather patterns in the spring. The most effective strategy for producers to adapt to these extreme events is to improve soil health.
The Northern Great Plains have experienced colder than normal weather over first few weeks of December. Cold temperatures certainly do affect our plants but there are some important differences.
If you are growing oats this year for grain, be sure to scout and plan a fungicide application to protect the oats from crown rust.
With growers’ interest emerging, SDSU Extension and research faculty teamed up and initiated a study in 2016 in Northeast SD to evaluate the effects of plant growth regulator. The study was conducted at the SDSU Northeast Research Farm (NERF) near South Shore, SD.
Most of the Great Plains, of which Western South Dakota is part of, have always been considered a semi-arid area of the U.S. This region is characterized by hot, relatively short summers, and usually cold, dry winters.