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A lush, green cluster of garden peas with several pods developed.

Peas: How to Grow It

The most common type of pea in American gardens is the shelling pea, also called the “garden pea” or “English pea.” Tender, sweet peas are removed from thin, tough pods before eating.

Green beans growing a garden.

Green Beans: How to Grow It

Snap beans, also called “green beans” or “string beans” (although most modern varieties do not have strings) are harvested when the pods contain immature seeds, and the pods are still succulent.

Two dandelions side by side. The left has a bee foraging on it. The right has a hover fly foraging on it..

Why Those Dandelions in Your Yard Aren’t So Bad

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.

Green beetle larvae with a white stripe running down its body.

Alfalfa Weevil Activity Prediction Update: June 1, 2020

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.

Two photos of alfalfa weevils during different lifecycle stages. The left is the larva stage and has a longate, green larvae that looks like a caterpillar with white stripe running down the body and brown h

It’s Time to Scout for Alfalfa Weevils

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.

Small white maggot next to a brown pill shaped pupa. Both a on soil with a yellow tape measure behind them

Watch for Seedcorn Maggots in Emerging Soybean

Of all of the potential early season pests, the seedcorn maggot is rarely an issue in South Dakota. However, we have started receiving reports of soybean fields that have poor emergence or seedling stand reductions occurring.

Large mass of small green insects and plant debris present on green implement.

Watch for Pea Aphid Populations in Alfalfa

Recent reports have indicated that pea aphid populations are very large in some alfalfa fields and should continue to be monitored and possibly managed.

Numerous grayish-brown bugs gathering on a green stem.

False Chinch Bugs Back Again

False chinch bugs are active yet again in South Dakota. Although they are normally only a nuisance pest, their populations can become magnified during cool, wet springs.

Black insect with a white spot on the back and orange tipped legs and antennae.

A fly? A hornet? Nope, it’s a sawfly!

This spring, there have been multiple reports of people seeing large fly-like insects in their yards. These insects are sawflies, and all reports thus far have been the elm sawfly (Cimbex americana).

Brown moth with light markings present on a green leaf.

Western Bean Cutworm Moths Observed in South Dakota

Over the weekend, South Dakota experienced strong southerly winds, which brought warm temperatures to the state. In addition, these winds also brought insect pests north, which included moths of the western bean cutworm.