Dan Bergman’s Point of View:

Fungicide and Insecticide spraying has begun. I have been seeing Japanese beetles and rootworm beetles in the corn fields, and Japanese beetle in bean fields. I have also seen some Northern corn leaf blight and grey leaf spot in some corn fields. One thing I have not yet seen is tar spot. The Stratford area has seen tar spot every year since the derecho in 2020, so we need to keep an eye out for that.

Asian Copperleaf Sightings

First discovered in Iowa in 2016, Asian Copperleaf has now been sighted by growers during harvest and confirmed in 5 counties by Iowa State University and Iowa Dept of Agriculture and Land Stewardship. This invasive weed is not native to the United States and all possible sightings should be reported to your United Coop agronomy sales team for better identification and reported to Iowa Dept of Agriculture and Land Stewardship personnel for confirmation. Asian Copperleaf is known to be herbicide group 2 (ALS inhibiting), 9 (glyphosate), and 14 (PPO inhibiting) resistant.  Asian Copperleaf has been confirmed in Calhoun, Humboldt, Franklin, Grundy, and Blackhawk Counties in Iowa as of September, 2023.

(photo and information from Iowa State University Extension / Integrated Crop Management)


Tim Hamilton’s Point of View:

There have been many hot topics for agriculture in our area this year: tar spot, drought, small beans, and the one very few have answers to, the impact of the smoke from Canadian wild fires and western US in years past.

One of the major agriculture universities (Purdue) just published a newsletter on this topic. From this newsletter, the major concern was the reduced light available for photosynthesis to corn rather than beans due to how they utilize the sunlight. It also raises concerns of increased levels of ozone at ground level which can harm to both soybeans and corn by entering the stomata during respiration. Increased ozone and reduced sunlight can also cause reductions in photosynthesis which can cause corn to remobilize carbohydrates from the stalk to satisfy grain fill thus causing weakened stalks and possible lodging issues later in the season. The smoke can also have positive effects. As much as the smoke can reflect light, it can also scatter sunlight. Scattered light can more easily penetrate lower into the canopy. This scattering can also help lower the surface temperature of the leaf surface which aids during the drought conditions we have been experiencing.  With large wild fires becoming more prevalent, there is still much to learn how it impacts not only our crops but also our vegetable gardens. The agronomy team at United Coop are continually learning and researching innovative products and services to better serve our growers.