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Extension Update by Gary Zoubeck [August 20, 2015]

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Coming Events

August 19, South Central Ag Lab Field Day, 8:50 a.m., near Clay Center

August 20, York County Corn Grower Plot Tour, 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Makovicka Farm, York

August 20, Crop Sense Field Day, 6:00 p.m., Cornerstone Event Center, York Fairgrounds

August 25, Extension Board Meeting, 6:30 p.m., Extension Office, York

South Central Ag Lab Field Day Aug. 19

I’d like to remind and encourage area producers to plant to attend the South Central Agricultural Laboratory’s (SCAL) Field Day this Wednesday, August 19.  Registration for the Field Day starts at 8:30 a.m. and tours run until 4 p.m. Lunch and refreshments are included.  CEU credits will be available. There is no cost for the field day, but RSVPs are requested to 402-762-3644 or jrees2@unl.edu. 

Tour 1 will be Cover Crops.

Tour 2 will be Bt Corn and Rootworm Management; Multiple Herbicide-Resistant Crops for Management of Resistant Weeds; Fungicide Application Timing on Corn and Update on Goss’ Bacterial Wilt.

Tour 3 will be Nutrient Management.

Tour 4 will be Soil and Water Management.

Dr. Ronnie Green, Interim Sr. Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, NU Vice President and Harlan Vice Chancellor for IANR will be the keynote lunch speaker.  For more information and details, go our webpage http://york.unl.edu/crops-future and click on the appropriate link!  It should be a great Field Day that I hope you can attend!

Cropping Update

I’ve had a busy week following the fair.  I assisted with three of the four Soybean Management Field Days at Alda, Wakefield and Greenwood.  We had some very interesting discussions regarding irrigating soybeans.  Typically the critical time for watering soybeans is the month of August.  We can hold off early water applications and if we get the needed moisture in August for rainfed fields or make timely irrigation applications, we can have outstanding yields.

The ETgages I’ve been monitoring each week drop an average of about 1.4” for the past week.  With much of the corn and soybeans in our peak stages for water use, if we multiply by the 1.1, the average water use has been about 1.54” for the week or about .22”/day.  For the latest crop water use or ET go to:  https://nawmn.unl.edu/ and click on view weekly ET data.  I receives .14” at the office Sunday evening and it looks like we have chances for more rain the next couple of days.

It’s hard to believe, but I’ve received a couple of questions from producers asking about scheduling the last irrigation of the season.  I guess we are getting close, since it’s the last halve of August, so where did the year go?  This season we’ve got crops in all stages of maturity because of the delayed planting this spring, so it’s important to know your crops stage of maturity as well as soil water status.  Corn at beginning dent requires 5.00 inches of water to maturity, corn at ¼ milk line requires 3.75 inches until maturity, corn at ½ milk line only needs 2.25 inches.  Many of the soybeans we had at the SMFD plots were at R5 (beginning seed enlargement).  They will require 6.5 inches of additional moisture, while soybeans at R6 (end of seed enlargement) need 3.5 inches and soybeans at R6.5 (the leaves begin to yellow) will need 1.9 inches of water.

Once you know the amount of water needed to maturity, you need to determine where the water will come from?  Will it be soil water, irrigation or rainfall?  Ideally we’ll use soil water, rain water and finally irrigation applications as the last resort. 

We have several tools that can with estimating your water needs.  Our NebGuide “Predicting the Last Irrigation of the Season” http://www.ianrpubs.unl.edu/epublic/pages/publicationD.jsp?publicationId=1030.  If you have or download our free CropWater App you can put in your soil type, Watermark Sensor readings and your crops stage of growth.  It will then estimate your crops needs to maturity. 

Hopefully Mother Nature will help us out as we wind down the irrigation season.  One thing to note is that corn matures based on heat units.  If it get hot, we’ll use more water and will mature sooner.  Soybeans on the other hand mature based on daylight, so if it get hotter than normal, we’ll use a little more water than normal, so you may need to make an additional irrigation application.  When leave begin   

York County Corn Grow and PROJECT SENSE Tour

The York Corn Growers will be hosting the annual plot tour on Thursday August 20th.  It will be a little earlier than usual and will go from 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.  The plot is located on the Ray and Ron Makovicka farm East of York on Road 14, north side between O & P. 

At 6:00 p.m. PROJECT SENSE (Sensors for Efficient Nitrogen Use and Stewardship of the Environment) Demonstration Day to follow at 6:00 p.m. at the Cornerstone Event Center, York Fair grounds.  No Cost to attend, but please register by calling 402-624-8000 or emailing Christina.franklin@unl.edu.       

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