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Plant & Pest Advisory > Field & Forage Crops

Contact Information

The points of contact between Rutgers Cooperative Extension Service and the grower & business communities are the NJ County Agricultural Agents. The agents are a tremendous source of information for both new and experienced growers.
Visit your local county extension office.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Drought/Heat Stressed Crops?

While some have had too much rain recently, many others are suffering throught various levels of drought and/or heat stress. Field corn is particularly vulnerable from 2 weeks before tasseling to 2 weeks after pollination, a stage which most of our corn is in now. We are already seeing "protandry" in a few fields, a condition where tassels emerge and shed pollen but there are no silks to pollinate. Soybeans and alfalfa based hays are not suffering as much so those with irrigation should be giving full attention to corn. If irrigation is limited and you have crop insurance, consult your agent before deciding to irrigate certain fields or parts thereof and abandon others. For those without irrigation about all you can do is plan to manage economic consequences. Research suggests that for every 4 hours of leaf rolling at pollination time 1% yield is lost and if 4 or more consecutive days at 93F temperatures or above (even with water) a 1% yield loss occurs and doubles for a time thereafter with more consecutive days. About 2 weeks from now strip back some husks and see if you have any seed set. If ears are somewhat to mostly barren, consult your crop insurance agent before doing anything. We will offer "salvaging" information, should those conditions occur, as well as suggestions regarding crop rotation.
Zane Helsel 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Spider mites in Soybeans

With the recent run of hot and dry weather it is no surprise that we are beginning to see spider mites in soybeans. During hot and dry conditions spider mites can multiply quickly and become a problem on soybeans. Field perimeters and corners tend to show the earliest symptoms of an infestation. That is why if they are caught early enough only field perimeters may have to be treated. Plants that are infested with spider mites will have a speckled appearance. The foilage of the plant will turn yellow and then bronze under heavy infestations. Research in Ohio has shown yield losses of almost 50% when plants are under severe infestation. Scouting and treatment information is available in the Mid-Atlantic Field Crop Pest Management Recommendation Guide

Bill Bamka

PMN Webinar-300 bushel corn!!!

The Plant Management Network is offering a 2-part webinar series on the potential of 300 bushel corn by 2030.
This presentation is open access through October 31, 2012, and can be viewed at

You can learn more about PMN and their other resources by going to:

Posted by Zane Helsel