Seminole Crop E News

Agricultural News for Farmers and Agribusiness in SW Georgia

Archive for March, 2012

Question of the Week – Erosion

Posted by romeethredge on March 30, 2012

Last week I was standing in an eroded area of a wheat field. It had washed down the row in a 4 inch downpour.  Most of the field was planted on the contour so this wouldn’t happen but the ends of the field would be ragged if the grower didn’t plant a pass around the ends and that’s what caused this.

This week  my question is about weed identification. I have been getting some of this weed brought into the office and I’ve had several calls about it. What is it?


Posted in Agriculture | 5 Comments »

Snap Beans coming up Strong

Posted by romeethredge on March 30, 2012

Snap Beans are emerging and growing well with our warm soil temperatures. We have over a thousand acres planted in Seminole County already. It makes a quick spring crop and we can plant cotton after the May harvest.

Posted in Agriculture | Leave a Comment »

Canola in Georgia

Posted by romeethredge on March 30, 2012

Canola crop is finishing up flowering and looking good.


























Posted in Agriculture | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Wheat Update

Posted by romeethredge on March 30, 2012

Lots of wheat is heading out and some has been sprayed for disease control. We are finding aphids in some fields that need treating, but many fields are fine. It’s a good idea to scout for aphids before spraying your fungicide to control aphids if needed. I’m not seeing much predation or parasitism of the aphids in some fields.

Also after the head emerges you get flowering.  See Photo.  It’s best not to water until flowering is over if possible.  Usually about a 3 day time frame.





















Leaf Rust found in more wheat fields this week. You can see a little powdery mildew mixed in here.


Posted in Water, Wheat | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Time to Plant Peanuts?

Posted by romeethredge on March 29, 2012

We have growers that want to go ahead and start planting peanuts because it has been so warm. I think it is still too early.

Dr. John Beasley, UGA Extension Scientist has the following comments about peanut planting.

We have had several mornings with lows in the low 50’s that help bring the 4-inch soil temperature down so the cool weather is not over yet.

As of yesterday (March 27), all reporting stations in the Georgia Automated Environmental Monitoring Network ( have a 7-day average 4-inch soil temperature in the upper 60’s or lower 70’s, warm enough to plant peanut seed.

If you are not familiar with the soil temperature resource in the Georgia Automated Environmental Monitoring Network, go to  and click on the + sign by the “Peanut” link on the left-hand side of the home page. When you click on the + sign you will see a link for “Soil Temperature”. Click on the “Soil Temperature” link and you will see all the reporting stations in south Georgia that have peanuts in their counties. There will be seven days of 4-inch soil temps. Every day it adds a day and drops a day and the far right-hand column has the 7-day average. We recommend that growers and wait to plant when the 4-inch soil temp is 65 degrees or higher and more recent research indicates we really need to wait until it hits 70 and above for three days or longer to be on the safe side.

HOWEVER, I would be very, very cautious planting just yet. I would like to see us get through another week to 10 days and make sure there are no cold fronts headed our way soon because even though our sandy soils have warmed up enough to plant they have not stabilized at those temperatures enough to prevent a quick drop in soil temp following the passing of a cold front. Keep in mind that the rain in the spring cold fronts is still cold and will lower the soil temperature quickly. These fronts typically come from northwest travelling southeast with cold air following behind. The typically summer rain events are thunderstorms generated by heat and are tied into moisture from the Gulf of Mexico.

Also, remember what the “old timers” say about an Easter freeze – there always seems to be a cold snap around Easter. Easter Sunday is April 8th and I would like to get past then if possible. One sure sign that we are probably not due any more freezing or very cold weather is all the pecan trees have leaved out and blackberry vines have bloomed. It doesn’t mean we still won’t have cold (40’s and low 50’s) mornings that will drop soil temp. Also remember that sandier soils warm more quickly but tend to cool off more following the passage of a cold front. The sandy clay loam soils (the “red” soils in the Sumter, Randolph, Calhoun, Early County areas) warm more slowly but do not drop as far or fast following the passage of a cold front.

My recommendation – be cautious for another 7-10 days before pulling the trigger. Also, we are dry right now, which could inhibit seed germination and plant emergence in marginal soil temps. Many fields are still too dry to plant, so that is a concern. Encourage your growers to be patient. I know we want and encourage planting earlier this year but we must be patient and make sure we don’t have any more cold snaps.

Posted in Agriculture | Leave a Comment »

Georgia Peanut Achievement Club

Posted by romeethredge on March 23, 2012

It is time to prepare entries for the 2011 Georgia Peanut Achievement Club (GPAC).  We are expecting some very worthy entries with outstanding yields.  

 There will be 10 winners chosen in this manner: 

(1)    One state-wide winner that produced the highest average yield in Georgia in 2010 on 100.0 – 299.9 acres.

 (2)    One state-wide winner that produced the highest average yield in Georgia in 2010 on 300 or more acres

 (3)    One winner from each of the four GPAC districts for the following two acreage categories:

    1) 300-699.9

    2) 700 and up

If you would like a packet emailed to you concerning this award, just email me at


Posted in Agriculture | Leave a Comment »

Crop Duster – Patch Price

Posted by romeethredge on March 23, 2012

One particular Ag Pilot here in Donalsonville has the most experience of anyone I know of in cropdusting.  Patch Price started flying when he was still a child and began agricultural flying in 1957. He began working out of Dothan Aviation in Alabama and in the early 60’s came to Donalsonville and has been here ever since.  He has logged over 40,000 hours of flying, and we are not talking about easy flying either, there’s no autopilot on a cropdusting airplane and no copilot seat on his plane.  Patch has 54 years of aerial application experience and has a good reputation for putting the agricultural chemical or fertilizer where it is needed.  He recalls the early years when it was all dusts that were applied and there were very few of those available.  He said the most common application on peanuts was 20 pounds of Sulfur per acre.  He also was a part of the Fire Ant Control Program, where low volume granular chemicals were applied over large areas of the state.  He flew a retrofittted  B 17 Bomber on those “missions” .  Patch said he’d had some close calls over the years but no crashes and he credits keeping good equipment as being a key to safety.

Patch Price likely has more crop dusting experience than anyone, anywhere.

Here's a photo I took while flying with Wade Spooner as we looked down on Patch, who was spraying some cotton down near Lake Seminole.

I’ve flown with Patch in a regular passenger plane and he is a good pilot to fly with.  He’s 73 now and still works hard for our farmers to keep our crops in good shape.

 But, I still have no desire to fly in a crop dusting plane with anyone even if there was an extra seat.

Here’s some additional information from the National Agricultural Aviation Association(NAAA).

“Aerial application is a critical component of high-yield agriculture. High yield agriculture, which includes the responsible use of crop protection products, benefits the environment by producing maximum crop yields from fewer acres. Some farmers apply their products from the ground using ground equipment, but many have realized that using an ag plane to do this work is often more efficient and effective. For example, aircraft can treat wet fields and spray when crop canopies are too thick for ground rigs. Unlike ground rigs, aerial application does not contribute to topsoil runoff. Moreover, when pests or disease threatens a crop, time is critical. At a minimum, an airplane or helicopter can accomplish three times as much application work as any other form of application can.”

Posted in Agriculture, Cotton, Crops, Entomology | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

Question of The Week – Lady Beetle Eggs

Posted by romeethredge on March 23, 2012

Yes, the photo in last week’s question was of Lady beetle eggs. They are beneficial insects that consume bad insects. It is good to see them in our crops. They often are feeding on aphids.

I found another set of Lady Beetle eggs yesterday in a wheat field.

This week I want to ask what I’m standing in and why is it there?

Posted in Agriculture, Entomology | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Wheat Diseases Worsen

Posted by romeethredge on March 22, 2012

I’ve seen a lot of Powdery Mildew on wheat today in Seminole County and some Leaf Rust and it’s even on the flag leaf in some fields, which really concerns me.  The flag leaf is just below the grain head and is very important for producing photosynthate for grain production. In other words, we want to protect the flag leaf.  We will spray protectant fungicides on these fields very soon to protect yield.  Fortunately most of the fields are at at least 90% headed, so we will get disease protection on most of the grain heads.

Here we can see a few speckles of reddish Leaf Rust on the flag leaf.

Here is some more rust on a lower leaf.

Here is some powdery mildew on the flag leaf of this wheat plant.

Here is a Wheat Foliar Disease Update from Dr Alfredo Martinez, UGA Extension Scientist.

1. Powdery mildew. Moderate to heavy powdery mildew (Erysiphe graminis) infections have registered throughout the state. Powdery mildew tends to diminish as temperatures consistently reach above 75ºF and RH falls below 85%. However, if powdery mildew is continuing to progress up the plant and is found in upper leaves (flag leaf minus 2) you may consider a fungicide application.

For powdery mildew, fungicides options include: propiconazole (Tilt, Propimax); metconazole (Caramba); pyraclostrobin (Headline); azoxystrobin (Quadris); prothioconazole (Proline); propiconazole + trifloxystrobin (Stratego); propiconazole + azoxystrobin (Quilt, QuiltXcel), prothioconazole + tebuconazole (Prosaro); prothioconazole + trifloxystrobin (Stratego YLD); pyraclostrobin + metconazole (Twinline); tebuconazole + trifloxystrobin (Absolute).

A complete list of wheat fungicides, rates and specific remarks and precautions can be found at the 2012 Plant Management Handbook page 145 and/or at 2011-2012 Wheat Production Guide (page 58). Always read the label for fungicide applications instructions, restrictions and proper handling.

2. Leaf Rust. Very few infections of leaf rust have been observed  in commercial fields. However, while Powdery mildew tends to diminish with warmer temperatures, leaf rust (Puccinia triticina-formerly P. recondita) and/or Stagonospora (leaf-glume blotch) (formerly Septoria) infections can surface with these present weather conditions in Georgia. Field monitoring for these diseases is advised.

3. Remember that for an appropriate filling of grain, protection of the flag leaf is essential.

Posted in Agriculture, Plant Pathology, Wheat | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Clovers & Co Coming to Donalsonville

Posted by romeethredge on March 22, 2012

The nationally acclaimed Georgia 4-H performing arts group,

Clovers & Co., is coming to Donalsonville for a special performance.

Saturday, March 31 at

Seminole County Elementary School at 7:00pm

800 Marianna Hwy, Donalsonville, GA 39845

$5 general admission


Tickets can be purchased at the Seminole County Extension

207 East Crawford Street, Donalsonville, GA 39845

Call 524-2326 for more information

Clovers & Co. is composed of forty-eight talented singers, dancers, and instrumentalists from across the state.  Established in 1981, Clovers & Co. is celebrating it’s 31st anniversary this year. Performing arts is one of the most popular projects in the Georgia 4-H Program and Clovers & Co. was created to provide 4-H’ers with an opportunity to share their talents with others.  Over one hundred sixty 4-H’ers audition during annual statewide tryouts for positions in the show cast.

The Clovers & Co. show features forty-five minutes of singing and dancing backed by a live band.  Songs of the past and present are combined in a fast-paced show that all ages will enjoy.

We are proud that our own 4H’er Rachel Grimsley will be performing. This will be a great show so get your tickets now.

Posted in 4H | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

%d bloggers like this: