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Extension > Minnesota Crop News > Archives > April 2014 Archives

April 2014 Archives

by David Nicolai, Coordinator for the Institute for Ag Professionals

2014 Ag Professional Field School

July 30 & 31, 2014 - St. Paul, MN

A hands-on, in-field program emphasizing crop and pest management diagnostic skill building in field crops. The program is geared to the educational needs of new and recently employed ag professionals who are in a beginning to intermediate phase in their agronomy careers.


As we enter soybean planting time, the most critical management period for soybean production, it's a good time to remember a few of the most critical decisions that can be made, including:

1)  Select and plant only the best varieties:  Not all soybeans are equal.  Each year, seed companies sell soybean seed with a wide range in yield potential.  Typically, the best-yielding varieties produce between 20 percent and 40 percent greater yields than those at the bottom.  Don't get stuck with a dog.  Make your initial selections carefully by using third-party yield information, and only accept substitutions with proven yield potential.

2)  Correct low-testing soils now:  Carefully evaluate soil test results.  Soybeans can typically utilize residual phosphorous and potassium from a well-fertilized previous corn crop, but if you're unsure about fertility levels, conduct a soil test in the spring.  Once planted it's too late to fix deficiencies.  Despite renewed attention to this old topic, do not apply nitrogen to soybeans.  Nitrogen very rarely increases soybean yields - not to mention extremely rare economic returns.

3)  Plant early:  Although delayed planting is likely in most areas, plant as early as possible -- but only into good soil conditions. Avoid planting with extreme cold and wet weather in the near-term forecast or in extremely dry soils.

4)  Plant in narrow rows:  Soybeans planted in narrow rows will out-yield those planted in 30-inch rows or wider.  You can expect approximately 5 percent of yield advantage for every 10 inches of narrowing, down to about 10 inches.  Fields with a history of white mold may still be planted in narrow rows, but populations should be managed carefully.

5)  Don't trust a post-emergence-only herbicide program:  Including pre-emergence herbicides into an overall weed-management strategy provides a wider window for mid-season applications and allows more options for weed control.  Reduce short- and long-term risks by using herbicides with diverse modes of action.

6)  Be Safe:  The springtime rush often brings long working hours.  Please avoid taking additional risks wherever possible.


Seth Naeve, Extension Soybean Specialist

 
Reprinted from the United Soybean Board News:

Weather Delays Corn Planting but High Yield Potential Exists

Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary April 17, 2014

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by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties

marte011@umn.edu by phone, if a local call to Foley 968-5077 or 1-800-964-4929

This information is for the Sauk Centre Hay Auction held on April 17, 2014.

Here are the reports:

April 17 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf  Individual lots sold are sorted and averaged by type and quality.

History of Selected Lots 2013-2014.pdf A summary of past 4 years and individual auctions so far this year.  

Graph 2001 to 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf  A line graph of for average from each sale 2001 to 2014 for Medium Square Alfalfa groups from 101 to 200 RFV.

As noted before, think carefully about averages.

We are making plans to do the Alfalfa Harvest Alert Scissors Cut Project in our Central MN area again this year.

MARKET REPORTS

"Weekly Hay Market Demand and Price Report for the Upper Midwest" that is put together by Ken Barnett, UW Extension.

http://www.uwex.edu/ces/forage/pubs/04_19_13_Hay_Market_Report.pdf

USDA Hay Market Reports - Click on Livestock, Poultry and Grain Market News, then look for Hay.

http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/LSMNpubs


2013 MN COUNTY HAY YIELDS

The National Ag Statistics 2013 Hay Production and Yield Reports for Minnesota have been posted on the website now. Go to http://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Minnesota/Publications/County_Estimates

Stearns County produced the largest amount of Alfalfa Hay and Morrison County produced the largest amount of "Other Dry Hay" (grass hay for all practical purposes).

By Lizabeth Stahl, Extension Educator in Crops

Does glyphosate perform as well today as it did when you first used it?  When producers were asked this question at University of Minnesota Private Pesticide Applicator Training sessions across southern Minnesota in 2014, 87% of the respondents said "No".  This percentage is up significantly from 2009, when 55% of respondents answered "No" to this question.  Increasing issues with resistance to glyphosate is likely, at least in part, behind reported reductions in weed control.  To address issues of reduced weed control with glyphosate, diversification is key. 

Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary April 3, 2014

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by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties

marte011@umn.edu by phone, if a local call to Foley 968-5077 or 1-800-964-4929

This information is for the Sauk Centre Hay Auction held on April 3, 2014.

Here are the reports:

April 3 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf  Individual lots sold are sorted and averaged by type and quality.

History of Selected Lots 2013-2014.pdf A summary of past 4 years and individual auctions so far this year.  

Graph 2001 to 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf   A line graph of for average from each sale 2001 to 2014 for Medium Square Alfalfa groups from 101 to 200 RFV.

As noted before, think carefully about averages.

The graphs might show a little up-turn in the market as we sometimes do in the spring as on-farm supplies run lower and first crop hay harvest is a ways off yet. You can do your own thinking about that. It was a wintery weather day on April 3 as you headed east from Sauk Center to the Wisconsin border.

MARKET REPORTS

"Weekly Hay Market Demand and Price Report for the Upper Midwest" that is put together by Ken Barnett, UW Extension.

http://www.uwex.edu/ces/forage/pubs/hay_market_report.htm

USDA Hay Market Reports - Click on Livestock, Poultry and Grain Market News, then look for Hay.

http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/LSMNpubs

By Lizabeth Stahl and Lisa Behnken, Extension Educators in Crops

University of Minnesota Extension has recently launched a U of MN Extension Crops YouTube video site. It can be accessed through the newly updated U of MN Extension Crops webpage at www.extension.umn.edu/crops under "Social Media".

Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary March 20, 2014

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by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties, marte011@umn.edu by phone, if a local call to Foley 968-5077 or 1-800-964-4929

This information is for the Sauk Centre Hay Auction held on March 20, 2014.

Here are the reports:

March 20 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf  Individual lots sold are sorted and averaged by type and quality.

History of Selected Lots 2013-2014.pdfA summary of past 4 years and individual auctions so far this year.  

Graph 2001 to 2014 SC Hay Auction.pdf   A line graph of for average from each sale 2001 to 2014 for Medium Square Alfalfa groups from 101 to 200 RFV.

Please note that there was only ONE load of "Medium" Square Alfalfa in the 176-200 RFV group and it sold for $260/T. There were 4 loads of "Large" Square Alfalfa in the 176-200 RFV group that averaged $221, ranging from $210 to 230. So you can think about whether that weighs into how you think about the $260 price on the line graph. As noted before, think carefully about averages.

There were 2 small loads of small square bales of straw that sold for $3.50 and $3.75 per bale for 52 and 106 bales. Will it be a better year for small grain where the snow is melted and we might be able to plant small grain earlier than last year?

 MARKET REPORTS

"Weekly Hay Market Demand and Price Report for the Upper Midwest" that is put together by Ken Barnett, UW Extension.

http://www.uwex.edu/ces/forage/pubs/hay_market_report.htm

 USDA Hay Market Reports - Click on Livestock, Poultry and Grain Market News, then look for Hay.

http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/LSMNpubs



M. Scott Wells - Extension Forage and Cropping Systems Agronomist

We are excited to announce that our University of Minnesota Forage website has emerged from its complete rebuild. Visitors to the U of M Forage website will be able to successfully navigate with ease through a host of informative topics associated with forage production such as:

  • Variety Selection and Genetics
  • Soil and Water Management
  • Establishment
  • Nutrient Management
  • Growth and Development
  • Utilization and Management
  • Organic Production
  • Along with finding a wealth of information associated with forage production, visitors will have their attention drawn to upcoming U of M Extension and other statewide events across all crops via the Crops Calendar. The Crops Calendar offers a portal to more than scheduled events; with a quick click of the mouse, visitors can access valuable information associated with the chosen event including:
  • Event Flyers
  • Registration Forms
  • Maps and Locations
  • Event Coordinator(s) Contact Information
  • Visitors to the U of M Forage website will also find up to date information and news via the Minnesota Crop News Blog. The Crop News Blog is an excellent resource highlighting current and relevant news, research findings, and other valuable resources across all cropping systems at the U of M.

    The primary goal and objective of the U of M Forage website rebuild is to collect and organize the information in a logical and efficient way so that you, the visitor, can easily navigate and browse the information relative to your interest.

    Come take a look: http://www.extension.umn.edu/agriculture/forages/

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