Cornell Field Crops News

Timely Field Crops information for the New York Agricultural Community

June 17, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
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NYS IPM Weekly Field Crops Pest Report, June 14, 2019

June 13, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
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Weather Outlook – June 13, 2019

NOAA Northeast Regional Climate Center, Cornell University

Last week temperatures ranged within 2 degrees of normal. Precipitation has ranged from half an inch to over 2 inches. Base 50 growing degree-days ranged from 40 to 120.

Unsettled conditions for most of the week with a few dry periods.

Today will be a rainy day with afternoon thunderstorms possible and temperatures will be cooler, in the mid 50s to mid 60s. Overnight lows will be in the upper 40s to low 50s with dry conditions.

Friday will also be cool with temperatures in the 50s to mid 60 for most areas with scattered showers likely, while western NY will have some sun and temperatures warming into the 70s. There will be gusty conditions with gusts of 20-30mph. Overnight temperatures will be in the upper 40s to low 50s with dry conditions.

Saturday temperatures will be in the low to mid 70s with dry conditions for most of the day before rain returns later in the day. Overnight temperatures will be in the mid 50s to low 60s.

Sunday highs will be in the low to mid 70s with showers and thunderstorms possible. Overnight temperatures will be in the mid 50s to low 60s.

Monday temperatures will be in the 70s with a chance of showers. Overnight temperatures will be in the mid 50s to low 60s.

Tuesday highs will be in the 70s with a chance of showers. Overnight temperatures will be in the mid 50s to low 60s.

Wednesday highs will be in the 70s with a chance of showers. Overnight temperatures will be in the mid 50s to low 60s.

The seven-day precipitation amounts will range from ½” to 3” .

The 8-14 day outlook (June 20-26) slightly favors above-normal temperatures for a majority of the state. Above-normal precipitation is slightly favored for the state.

Maps of 8-14 day outlooks:
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/814day/index.php

National Weather Service watch/warnings map:
http://www.weather.gov/erh/

US Drought Monitor
http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/Home.aspx

Drought Impact Reporter:
https://droughtreporter.unl.edu/map/

CLIMOD2 (NRCC data interface):
http://climodtest.nrcc.cornell.edu

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June 7, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on Weather Outlook – June 6, 2019

Weather Outlook – June 6, 2019

Northeast Regional Climate Center

After today, a long awaited dry period is in store through at least late Monday.   Temperatures across the region will be near or slightly above normal  for the entire week.  Highs will be in the mid 70s  to mid 80s and lows will be in the low to mid 50s.  The next storm system will affect the region on late Monday and Tuesday.  Tuesday looks like the wettest day of the week, with many places seeing 1-2 inches of rain.  Overnight temperatures Monday and Tuesday will be on the warm side (up 50- up 60) with cloudy overnight conditions.  With the sunny/warm conditions over the next 3-4 days, evapotranspiration should be very high since we are nearing the summer solstice.   Expect near 0.25 each day.  The 8-14 day forecast calls for yet another trough to establish over the Northeast.  This should yet again delay the start of summer with cool/wet conditions forecast over the state.

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May 28, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on NYS IPM Weekly Field Crops Report-May 27, 2019

May 24, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on Wet Spring Can Impact Forage Quality for Entire Year

Wet Spring Can Impact Forage Quality for Entire Year

Fay Benson – SCNY Cornell Regional Dairy Team

Once again we find ourselves watching the calendar days flipping by and continued wet weather keeping farmers from working in the field. If the wet weather continues to keep farmers from planting their corn and soybeans, it prevents them from a timely harvest of first cutting hay crops. This not only reduces the quality but sets the stage for the rest of the hay harvest though out the summer. For those farmers that purchased crop insurance on their corn or soybeans they can sleep a little easier at night. This is because they have options to leave fallow those fields that are too wet to plant or are drowned after they are planted by using the “Prevented Planting” or “Replant” options of their crop insurance policy.

A number of farmers I have interviewed claim their sole reason for buying crop insurance is for the prevented planting option which is available on corn and soybean policies. Prevented planting decisions should be made as you approach the final planting date for the crop. In New York, June 10th is the Final Planting Date for soybeans, and for silage and grain corn.

Replant payments

To receive Replant payments, you must have a loss of the lesser of 20 acres or 20% of the insured planted acres to qualify for a replant payment. Be sure to contact your crop insurance agent once you decide replant is needed. Do not destroy any evidence of the initial planting before reporting the loss to your sales agent.

Prevented Planting

Can be claimed as any insurable cause of loss that keeps you out of the fields prior to 6/10/2019, providing the cause is general in the area, and other requirements are met. If a farmer applies for prevented planting they will receive 55% of the crops guarantee for corn and 60% of the crop’s guarantee for soybeans. When signing up for crop insurance farmers have the option to increase their prevented planning coverage by 5% of their guarantee by paying a premium.

One added decision farmers will need to make this year is the possibilities of “Market Facilitation Program” payments being made by the government. If Prevented Planting is used those acres will have no bushels to apply for such payments.

If your planting is delayed or prevented due to an insurable cause, be sure to notify your crop insurance agent in writing within 72 hours of the final planting date for the affected crop.  Additionally, if you participate in Farm Service Agency (FSA) programs, it is important to report your prevented planting acreage within 15 calendar days after the final planting date for the crop in order to receive prevented planting acreage credit.

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May 23, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
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Weather Outlook – May 23, 2019

NOAA Northeast Regional Climate Center, Cornell University

Last week temperatures ranged within 2 degrees of normal for most areas; 2-4 degrees above normal in the Hudson Valley. Precipitation has ranged from a trace to over 2”. Base 50 growing degree-days ranged from 10 to 90.

GDD 48 - March 1 - May 22 GDD 48 - May 1 - May 22 GDD 50 - March 1 - May 22 GDD 50 - May 1 - May 22

Slight risk for severe storms today with the main threats being damaging winds and large hail. Seasonable to above-normal temperatures this week, but with unsettled weather for most days. Memorial Day should be dry.

Today thunderstorms are likely with the potential for severe storms with damaging winds and large hail, especially during the afternoon and evening. Temperatures will be in the mid 60s to 70s with muggy conditions. Overnight lows will be in the 50s, some 40s, with a chance of showers overnight into Friday.

Friday will become mostly sunny with cooler temperatures in the 60s to low 70s. Spotty showers are possible and windy conditions are expected. Overnight temperatures will be in the 40s to low 50s.

Saturday temperatures will be in the mid 60s to 70s with higher humidity and the potential for showers and thunderstorms. Overnight temperatures will be in the 50s to near 60, a few showers are possible.

Sunday highs will be in the mid 60s to near 80 with scattered showers possible. Overnight temperatures will be in the upper 40s to upper 50s.

Monday temperatures will be in the mid 60s to upper 70s with mostly dry conditions. Overnight temperatures will be in the upper 40s to 50s with showers possible overnight.

Tuesday highs will be in the 60s to lower 70s with showers possible. Overnight temperatures will be in the 50s.

Wednesday highs will be in the mid 60s to upper 70s with showers possible. Overnight temperatures will be in the 50s.

The seven-day precipitation amounts will range from ½” to over 2 ½” .

The 8-14 day outlook (May 30 – June 5) favors below-normal temperatures for a majority of the state. Above-normal precipitation is favored for the state.

Maps of 8-14 day outlooks:
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/814day/index.php

National Weather Service watch/warnings map:
http://www.weather.gov/erh/

US Drought Monitor
http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/Home.aspx

Drought Impact Reporter:
https://droughtreporter.unl.edu/map/

CLIMOD2 (NRCC data interface):
http://climodtest.nrcc.cornell.edu

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May 23, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on Ideas for Dairies Dealing with Weather Challenges

Ideas for Dairies Dealing with Weather Challenges

From David R Balbian, M.S., P.A.S. – Area Dairy Management Specialist – Cornell Cooperative Extension – Central New York Dairy, Livestock and Field Crops

This extremely wet Spring has caused delays in the harvest of haycrop in our region. Most people have not harvested any haycrop, yet the crop has continued to mature with most grass fields in our 1st cut monitoring program exceeding 55% NDF, some even exceeding 60% NDF! There is little milk to be made with this forage. Additional grain will only help a little. This feed will put a lid on your herd’s ability to be productive. So, what to do? Here are some ideas to consider. They do not fit for everyone, as every dairy has their own unique set of circumstances to deal with. I simply put them out there for you to take into consideration to help maintain some economic viability with your operation.

  1. Skip over your grass fields (and maybe mixed stands). Harvest your alfalfa and perhaps your mixed stands. Separate this poorer haycrop when storing and utilize it for dry cows and perhaps older growing heifers. Be sure to rebalance diets.
  2. Utilize the 1st Cut Monitoring Update information that Kevin Ganoe sent to you yesterday. Find the fields that most closely match your geographic location to see where you stand. This info will help you to make these decisions.
  3. If you have a market for later cut dry hay and you can make dry hay & you can sell it, that is an option to consider to get some value out of this feed.
  4. Some of this late cut grass could perhaps be utilized as bedding.
  5. If you have a good inventory of Corn Silage and you must feed some of this poorer haycrop to the lactating cows, consider moving to a heavier C.S. diet. This will reduce the negative effects of this poorer haycrop on milk production.
  6. If you traditionally grow some corn for grain, consider diverting more of it to silage to allow you to reduce the amount of poor haycrop you may have to feed. Then feed more corn silage.
  7. If you have to feed some of this poor haycrop you may want to consider adding some digestible fiber sources to the diet such as soy hulls, brewers grain, citrus pulp, etc. This will add some cost. To get the milk response benefit you’ll need to replace some forage (the poorer haycrop forage) with these ingredients.
  8. Be sure to feed your grassy fields (when harvested) with Nitrogen to increase yields on subsequent cuttings and to increase its protein content. If this rainy weather continues, grasses will respond well to the additional Nitrogen. Connect with Kevin Ganoe for some specific advise on this. Store this separate from poorer quality feed and allocate it to you lactating cows.
  9. Work with your nutritionist to develop a plan that is specific for your operation  based on your situation and circumstances.
  10. Definitely harvest the high quality haycrop that you may have still out in the field FIRST, then plant your corn.

I am sure there are some other ideas that people may have to minimize the negative effects this late harvested haycrop can have on your milking herd. I simply put these out there for you to consider. I know they do not work for everyone, but perhaps a few or even one idea could be greatly beneficial. Remember, productivity is a primary factor linked to economic viability on the vast majority of dairy farms.

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May 20, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on NYS IPM Weekly Field Crops Pest Report – May 20, 2019

NYS IPM Weekly Field Crops Pest Report – May 20, 2019

May 17, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on Weather Outlook – May 16, 2019

Weather Outlook – May 16, 2019

NOAA Northeast Regional Climate Center, Cornell University

Last week temperatures ranged from 2 to 8 degrees below normal. Precipitation has ranged from 1” to over 4”. Base 50 growing degree-days were less than 30.

GDD Base 48 Mar 1 - May 15 GDD Base 48 May 1 - May 15 GDD Base 50 Mar1 - May 15GDD Base 50 May 1 - May 15

Rain possible Thursday night into Friday, and some unsettled weather next week, but overall a much drier week with temperatures near-normal.

Friday will be in the 60s with showers, ending in the afternoon. Overnight temperatures will be in the 40s.

Saturday temperatures will be in the 60s and low 70s with dry conditions. Overnight temperatures will be in the 40s, a few showers are possible.

Sunday highs will be in the 60s to 70s with mostly dry conditions. Overnight temperatures will be in the 40s with showers overnight into Monday.

Monday temperatures will be in the 60s to 70s. Overnight temperatures will be in the 40s with showers possible overnight into Tuesday.

Tuesday highs will be in the 60s to low 70s with scattered showers possible. Overnight temperatures will be in the 40s.

Wednesday highs will be in the 60s to low 70s with scattered showers possible. Overnight temperatures will be in the 50s.

The seven-day precipitation amounts will range from ¼” to near 1 ½”.

The 8-14 day outlook (May 23-29) favors above-normal temperatures for all of NY, slightly favors above-normal precipitation for western NY and slightly favors below-normal precipitation for southeast NY.

Maps of 8-14 day outlooks:
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/predictions/814day/index.php

National Weather Service watch/warnings map:
http://www.weather.gov/erh/

US Drought Monitor
http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/Home.aspx

Drought Impact Reporter:
https://droughtreporter.unl.edu/map/

CLIMOD2 (NRCC data interface):
http://climodtest.nrcc.cornell.edu

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May 9, 2019
by Cornell Field Crops
Comments Off on Resources for dealing with Spring Weather Delays

Resources for dealing with Spring Weather Delays

Cornell Cooperative Extension and PRO-DAIRY

The following article was written in 2011. With the wet weather much of New York State has been seeing this spring, we thought it would be helpful to re-visit the article again this year.

 

 

 

While the forecast still seems unsettled we are all hopeful that we are past the worst of the rain and can begin catch up on spring’s work.  Here we have attempted to summarize a variety of relevant topics as you consider how to best tackle all the work that needs to take place is a condensed time-frame.  As always contact your local Extension office for more information on any of these topics.

Safety First!

Harvest is a busy time for most farm operations. Time means money when it comes to yields, production schedules, and operating costs. However, time also ensures safety at harvest. The extra time it takes to perform a task properly can determine whether the job is completed at all. Harvest season comes with many stresses. Exposure to dangerous situations can increase the mental pressure, and your risk of injury. Follow safe practices around harvest equipment to make the most of your work time.  The most important goal this spring is to send all family members and employees home to their families SAFE … EVERYDAY!!

Planning and Team Work

With your condensed time window for key field activities this spring, the solution to accomplishing everything on time might come from a different way of thinking.  Consider the 5,000-foot view of the land that you and your neighbors work and think of the inventory of people and equipment potentially available to apply manure, fit fields, plant, harvest, haul, pack bunk, etc. for the collective land base.  Are there opportunities to share equipment and time even where you haven’t done so before?  Can you bring in equipment or a custom operator to take care of one activity while you focus on another? Does it make sense to use the 4-row planter when a 6-row is sitting idle a mile away?  Can you bring in extra help for milking?  Do you have any retired neighbors who could lend a hand with field work?

Consider gathering with your neighbors to strategize and to make sure that the most efficient equipment is fully utilized this year.  Remember: you and your neighbors are in the same boat, so you might as well paddle together!

Tillage and Impact on Wet Soil

While driving on and tilling wet soil may be somewhat unavoidable this spring, there is still an opportunity to reduce the amount of damage that is done.  Here is a summary of pointers from Tom Kilcer, Advanced Ag Systems, Kinderhook, NY:

  • Keep tillage shallow, in friable top soil not wet soil underneath.
  • Utilize vertical tillage, avoid equipment such as disks that simply smear and ruin the structure of wet soils.
  • Minimize weight whenever possible (fertilizer hoppers, etc.).
  • Make sure wheels on planter tractor are offset and not compacting the corn rows.
  • Check the seed furrow when planting: if planter is smearing sidewalls, it is too wet to plant.
  • Pay extra attention to seed placement and row cover by planter.

Park the Corn Planter when 1st Cutting is Ready!

The window of opportunity for high quality hay forage is 1-3 days. Window of opportunity to plant corn is April 25 to June 1 = 36 days.  The harvest opportunity for corn is corn silage or snaplage or HMSC or dry shell or ear corn.

First cut is 40% of yield in 3 cut system. Delaying cutting alfalfa past optimum first-crop harvest timing reduces the quality. Subsequent crops are then also delayed, making timely harvest of the last crop before fall more difficult. It is important to get that first cut off somehow. If forage inventory is good, consider alternative storage options to feed to heifers or just chop poor quality forage back onto the field. Do you really need all of it? Re-growth is critical for a 3 cut system.

To go from ideal alfalfa of 20% CP, 30% ADF, and 40% NDF, to 17 – 34 – 45, takes only 5 or 6 days! Obviously, poor quality forage does not have the same milk producing potential.

What nutrient changes can you expect in alfalfa due to advancing maturity?

  • Decreased intake – due to higher NDF, which increases about 0.9% per day.
  • Decreased digestibility and energy value – due to higher ADF, which increases about 0.7% per day and a larger amount of lignin, which is indigestible.
  • Decreased protein – decreases about 0.5% per day.

How much does it cost me to delay harvest? A lot! For each unit of NDF increase past 40% NDF for will:

  • Need: increased energy and protein supplements.
  • Have: lost production from the effect of lower NDF digestibility on dry matter intake.

Filling rates by total tractor weights chartTips for haylage harvest:

  • DO NOT ensile haylage wetter than 30% (target 32-40% DM). You all will be in a hurry to get haylage in the silos. Haylage wetter than 30% will have a greater chance of clostridia fermentation and butyric acid production.
  • Do NOT chop alfalfa WET!
  • Do INOCULATE at the forage harvester!
  • DO ADD another PACK tractor or weight to existing tractors.
  • Consider harvest strategies such as HAY IN A DAY to lower weather risk and improve forage quality. Hay in a Day YouTube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSsQvVga6tw
  • Keep windrows up off the ground to minimize soil contamination at harvest.

Alfalfa height at optimum mixed stand NDF graphIssues with wet haylage:

  • Reduced intake
  • Potential health problems -ketosis
  • And for problems to get worse with time
  • Dispose of silage with very high (>2%) butyric acid content
  • Bad silage can be good fertilizer.

Don’t fill your storage with poor first cutting.  You’ll feel duty-bound to feed out even as it depresses production, cash flow and you.

1st Cutting is just around the Corner

Despite the wet start to the season, we have had more heat than many think.  So even though other aspects of springs work are behind the hay is not, with reports from around NYS showing that it is on track for this time of May.  So take the time to check those hayfields starting now!

Inoculants to Minimize Risk with Haylage Made Under Adverse Conditions?

The probability you may be forced into putting up at least some of 1st crop wetter than you would like has gone up with near-normal relative maturity for the date (5/5/11) and saturated soils. Having an effective forage inoculant on hand with a track record of pushing fermentation towards “normal” and away from “clostridial” is good risk management.

Manufacturers and suppliers of inoculants practice supply and demand risk management. They cannot afford to be hung out to dry with pallets full of unsold/unused product. There is only so much product available beyond the pre-orders taken during the winter. If you act fast you may have a shot at some supply.

Effective inoculant? Not much controlled research is done testing inoculants under these known (wet) adverse conditions. Yet we seem to face them more often than we’d like. Check the literature that was dropped off by the representative. Look for actual forage analyses of wet haylage put up under actual farm conditions within the past 5 years with their inoculant.           Make sure it was truly “wet”, in the 28 – 34% dry matter range (or worse).  A slow, cold clostridial fermentation consumes energy, creates intake-depressing butyric acid and breaks down the nitrogen in protein to ammonia.  If use of the inoculant was a financial “win” for the farm, these key measures will serve as gauges.  pH < 4.5, Lactic Acid > 2 (alfalfa) – 3 (grass), Acetic Acid < 2 (alfalfa) – 3 (grass), Butyric Acid < 0.1 and Ammonia as % of N < 15.

Is It Too Late for Spring Forage Seedings?

Wet soil conditions and delayed field work have prompted questions on how late alfalfa or clover/grass seedings can be made.  The typical spring planting window is April through early May for NNY.  Early June is not an ideal time to establish new seedings.  The warm soil temperatures and hot weather will bring on large flushes of annual weeds, putting the new forage seedlings at a disadvantage. Consider shifting seedings to early August.  In the meantime if you need tonnage you can put in an annual crop after hay is harvested.

If oats are used as a companion crop, their rate of seeding should be reduced to half of normal (or even eliminated) with May seedings.

When is it Time to Stop Planting Corn Altogether?

Effect on yeild of delayed planting of corn by hybrid maturityHere is a graph showing the effect on yield of delayed planting according to hybrid maturity.  Unfortunately I don’t think there is enough seed available for many farms to be able to switch out their longer season hybrids for short ones at this point.  While it is important to keep hybrid maturity in mind, there are a number of other factors you need to consider for your farm.  Here are a few of the considerations that may apply:

  • Hybrid Maturity you ordered/have on hand
  • Forage Inventories
  • Ability to store and segregate different forages
  • Capacity/ability of your landbase

Excerpt from: 2011 Cornell Guide For Integrated Field Crop Management
To achieve the full yield potential of an early planting date, full-season hybrids (hybrids that match the growing degree days in a region) are necessary. After the first or second week of May, however, the yield potential of full-season hybrids decreases appreciably. Furthermore, full-season hybrids may not mature in the fall if planted after the second week of May. Therefore, for grain production, full-season hybrids should be planted only in late April or the first 10 days of May. For silage production, full-season hybrids can be planted until mid-May. The majority of corn acreage should be planted to medium-season hybrids (200 growing degree days less than the growing degree days in a region). If planting must be delayed until late May or early June, early-season hybrids are recommended.

Corn planted after late June will be sloppy wet and hard to deal with at harvest and feedout.

Warm Season Annual Forage Crops

Warm season annual forage crops provide additional forage when perennial forages are in short supply.  While some farmers include them as part of their regular cropping system, many plant them for emergency forage crops.  Delayed spring planting and following winterkilled alfalfa are situations where these crops fit on the farm.

Most warm season annual forage crops can be planted anytime between early June and mid July.  There are many warm season annual forage crops that can be successfully grown in Northern New York.  Teff and brown midrib (BMR) sorghum sudangrass are two warm season annual grasses that are well suited to our region.

Teff is a warm season annual grass that can be grown for hay, silage or pasture.  Despite the fact that there has been very little teff grown in NNY, local research has demonstrated that it has the potential to produce high quality forage under proper management.  See Agronomy Factsheets “Teff as an Emergency Forage” http://nmsp.cals.cornell.edu/guidelines/factsheets.html

In a one cut system, 1.5 to 2 tons DM per acre are expected, while in a 2 to 3 cut system, dry matter yields range from 3.3 to 4.9 tons per acre.  When harvested at the proper time and sufficient nitrogen applied, crude protein will generally be between 15 and 16% of dry matter.

Brown Midrib Sorghum Sudangrass (BMR SxS) is a low lignin, highly digestible, warm-season, annual grass.  It can be high yielding but harvest management can be an issue given its high moisture content. See Agronomy Factsheet “Brown Midrib Sorghum Sudangrass, Part 1” http://nmsp.cals.cornell.edu/guidelines/factsheets.html

Dry matter yields of 3 to 5.5 tons per acre are expected and when harvested at the proper time with sufficient nitrogen applied, crude protein will generally be between 15 and 16% of dry matter.

Warm season annual forages can provide needed forage at key times during the year and have been used successfully by producers for many years.  In addition to Teff and BMR SxS, other options include Spring Grains, Buckwheat and Japanese Millet. Several factors should be considered before planting any crop.  If you have any questions about growing summer annuals contact your local Extension office.

 

Contributors:

John Conway and Janice Degni, South Central NY Dairy & Field Crops Team

Mike Hunter and Ron Kuck, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County

Frans Vokey and Joe Lawrence, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Lewis County

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