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Young winter wheat plants with light yellowish green leaves, a symptom of nutrient deficiency.

SDSU Extension Seeks Grower Input for South Dakota Nutrient Management Survey

June 12, 2019

SDSU Extension, the South Dakota Nutrient Research and Education Council and the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station at SDSU are interested in learning more about the nutrient management practices you use on your farm through a survey.

Corn, Soil Fertility, Cover Crops, Forage, Field Pea, Flax, Oats, Oilseed, Pulse Crops, Sorghum, Soybean, Sunflower, Wheat, Crop Management, Crop Treatments, Conservation

A graph indicating rising corn yields and generally steady corn acreage from 1926 to 2016/2017.

Leveling the Playing Field for U.S. Corn

Corn grain has been for a long time the world standard when it comes to energy feeds for livestock. It has been traditionally a quite homogeneous, energy-dense feed, only surpassed from this perspective by oils and fats or by other feedstuffs also rich in lipids.

Green corn leaf with common stalk borer caterpillar within.

Common Stalk Borer Activity: June 7, 2019

It finally warmed up and the insects have definitely become more active. However, our calculations indicate that not enough degree days have been accumulated for common stalk borer activity to warrant any scouting, but spraying field edges should be avoided through most of South Dakota in the next week.

Young corn plant with three circular feeding holes in a leaf.

Black Cutworm Caterpillars Are Actively Feeding in South Dakota

We received numerous reports this week of small holes in V1-V2 corn plants. The holes are the result of early instar cutworm caterpillar feeding and, more specifically, black cutworm caterpillars. After hatching, black cutworm caterpillars initially feed on the leaves. As they develop and become larger, they pose a clipping or cutting threat to corn.

A color-coded map of the United States indicating precipitation outlook for June 2019.

June 2019 Climate Outlook for South Dakota

As South Dakota emerges from the wettest 12-month period in 124 years of climate recordkeeping (June 2018-May 2019), June has started warmer and drier than average. The outlook, however, turns towards cooler and wetter than average again for the middle of the month.

Three sets of rumen papillae photos. The first is labeled C and has several clusters of large, round, papillae. The second is DG1 and has several clusters of small to medium, round, papillae. The last is DG2 and has several clusters of small to medium, round, papillae.

Distillers’ Grains and Rumen Papillae Growth

Distillers grains are without a doubt one of the most versatile ruminant feedstuffs. Aside from their high concentration of sought-after nutrients (i.e. protein, energy, phosphorus), their impact on the digestibility of other feeds is minimal. In fact, by not interfering with the digestion particularly of structural carbohydrates, they allow for more energy to be obtained from forages.

Color-coded map of South Dakota and other Midwestern states. Colors indicate a higher risk of unplanted areas in Eastern and Northeastern South Dakota.

Stretching Corn Silage Supplies

During the 2002 drought there was a need to stretch corn silage supplies as a result of the drought that affected the U.S. Now we deal with the opposite scenario, where excessive spring rains have not allowed farmers to get to the fields. In both situations livestock producers face challenges.

Diagram showing increasing harvested acres of corn and soybeans and decreasing harvested acres of wheat in South Dakota. Other crops remain steady, while hay decreased and then slightly increased.

Crop Diversity Reduced in South Dakota

The recently released 2017 Census of Agriculture data shows that South Dakota has experienced a considerable increase in acreage harvested of two major crops, corn and soybeans over the past decade.

A wet, unplanted field with water pooling and running off into a ditch.

Is Herbicide Carryover a Concern in Wet Weather

June 04, 2019

For many South Dakota farmers, wet conditions have forced the need to change planting plans. In some cases, crops are being planted in areas that were not planned for that crop this year. One factor in the moving of crops that should not be overlooked is carryover, explained Paul Johnson, SDSU Extension Weed Science Coordinator.

Crop Management, Crop Treatments, Corn, Soybean, Wheat, Flood