Seminole Crop E News

Agricultural News for Farmers and Agribusiness in SW Georgia

Archive for May, 2013

Small Grain Harvest Started

Posted by romeethredge on May 24, 2013

Small grain harvest has started with a bang this week. I’ve been surprised at how quickly our small grains have dried down. Some growers checked grain moisture and stopped, but many had low enough moistures to keep going. They are having to check fields and move around some.

Wheat yields look ok, but nothing special. Down from our high years for sure. We may have some decrease from the cloudy wet weather we had earlier. Also some cold injury in some areas. We had vernalization problems as well, due to lack of cold hours. I saw one or two fields with some fusarium head blight, not a common problem here, but made worse by rain during flowering. I’m hearing that stink bugs are pretty commonly seen in these fields so we have to watch for them moving to corn. One good thing about the dry weather we have now is that it makes good harvest conditions for small grains, but we need some rain.


Wheat harvest.


Here's some oats being combined.

Here’s some oats being combined.



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

“Cracking” Peanuts and Herbicides

Posted by romeethredge on May 24, 2013

Folks ask us about “cracking” peanuts and herbicides. Dr. Eric Prostko, UGA Extension Scientist says, ” The rainy weather and warm temperatures have caused a more rapid emergence of peanuts in many fields.  Additionally, the rainy weather has prevented the timely application of residual herbicides.

Here are a few things to remember:

1) DO NOT apply Valor or Prowl to peanut fields that are cracking.  The risk of injury from these herbicides is significantly increased at this stage of growth.  Growers in this situation who intended to use Valor + Prowl (or Sonalan) need to re-adjust their herbicide programs.

2) My suggestion would be to wait a few days until the peanuts fully emerge, then apply a combination of Gramoxone SL (12 oz/A) + Storm (16 oz/A) + Dual Magnum (16 oz/A).

  Yes, this combination will be very “hot” but the peanuts should recover (Figure 1).

3) In my research program, I have been very successful at controlling pigweed without Valor using a Dual-based program.  An additional application of Dual (16 oz/A) should be applied in combination with either Cadre (4 oz/A) or Cobra (12 oz/A) approximately 14-21 days after the initial Gramoxone treatment. (Figure 2).

4) When Dual is included in any POST herbicide mixture used on peanuts, additional surfactant/crop oil is NOT needed.”

Figure 1.  Peanut injury caused by Gramoxone + Storm + Dual Magnum – 2 DAT.
Figure 2.  Weed control in peanuts with a Dual-based herbicide program.

Posted in Peanuts, Weeds | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Corn Leaf Miner

Posted by romeethredge on May 23, 2013

I’m seeing a lot of leaf miners in corn leaves now. We need to make sure we don’t mistake them for a disease. They are a bother but usually don’t cause enough damage to worry about. The tiny adult lays eggs that hatch and the very tiny worm burrows between the layers of the leaf and cause these areas on the leaf.

Here’s some comments from Dr. David Buntin, UGA Entomologist on the matter.”The damage is like defoliation and always looks worse than it is.  The leaf area actually damaged by the mines usually is small and much less than a threshold for defoliation.

No need to treat for leafminers and no effect on yield.
Control with an insecticide would be difficult because timing to get the adults would be difficult.  Save the spray for stink bugs.”

Here’s a link to some more info below



Posted in Corn, Entomology | Leave a Comment »

Stink Bugs are Abundant

Posted by romeethredge on May 23, 2013

I heard a country music song yesterday that talked about a bug being in a Margarita drink. Well, I can understand that because they are abundant now. In the song, he ended up drinking the bug and he thought it made the drink sweeter, but stink bugs can hurt us in corn especially early on when it affects the whole ear.

I’ve heard from several folks in the last few days that say they have seen several stink bugs. Folks harvesting small grains are seeing them, so if you have corn that has small ears on it, especially if it’s near a wheat field, you may want to check it closely. I saw several brown and some green stink bugs in corn this week. I also saw some egg masses. In the photo below you can see 2 egg masses and the dark ones are about to hatch and the creamy white ones are still a few days away from hatching. This corn is just beginning to tassel and ears are emerging.

The grower decided to delay his spray for 5 days,(stink bug eggs will hatch in 5 to 6 days from laying). He’ll go with a fungicide for disease and insecticide for stink bugs. He’s managing the corn for very high yields.

All these photos were taken this week in Seminole County.




Dark stink bug eggs are about to hatch and the creamy ones lack a few days.


Field corn is starting to tassel.

Field corn is starting to tassel.


The tiny ear is very susceptible to stink bug damage.

The tiny ear is very susceptible to stink bug damage.


Posted in Corn, Entomology | Leave a Comment »

Watering Peanuts

Posted by romeethredge on May 23, 2013


How much water do my peanuts need? Gary L. Hawkins, John Beasley & Calvin Perry, UGA College of Ag Scientists

 The following graph is  reproduced from the UGA Bulletin #974 “Irrigation Scheduling Methods” by Kerry  Harrison.   This curve represents the  average daily water use by peanuts over the life of the crop.

Fullscreen capture 5232013 111947 AM-001

In UGA Bulletin #974 there is an explanation and example of  how much and how often water should be supplied to the plants.  There are also two methods of calculating  water application amounts and days between applications (The Water Balance  Method will be used for an example in this article).  Water can be added either from rainfall or  irrigation if available.  Here I would  like to go through an example to provide a different soil type other than that  listed in the bulletin.  In this example  I will use the soils in the Decatur/Mitchell County Area.  Information to use in calculating the needed  water comes from three different locations:   The County Soil Survey books produced by the USDA-NRCS, the Web Soil  Survey (  and the Georgia Weather Net (

For the Water Balance Method, let’s assume a Blanton Soil  Series, 24 inches is the rooting depth (be aware of hardpan depth), the total  available water is 1.92 inches (from the Soil Survey book, Table 16 or the Web  Soil Survey under the following tabs -“Soil Data Explorer”, “Soil Properties  and Qualities”, Soil Physical Properties”) and let’s assume a 60 day old  crop.

Step 1:  Determine from the amount of required water from  water use curve, from the curve we will need 0.19 inches per day.

Step 2:  Determine irrigation by setting lower limit  for water balance.  For this example we  will use a 50% limit (the crop only uses half of available water before  replacing).  So if the available water in  the 24 inch root zone is 1.92 then we will work using 0.96 inches will need to  be replaced.

Step 3:  Determine amount of irrigation by accounting  for irrigation system efficiency.  For  this example we will use 75%.  The amount  of water to be applied is 0.96/0.75 = 1.28 inches or 1.3 inches.

Step 4:  Determine frequency of irrigation by dividing  amount needed by water use per day.  For  this example the frequency will be: 0.096/0.19 = 5 days.

Step 5:  Therefore it is necessary to apply 1.3 inches  every 5 days to maintain 50% available water on Peanuts that are 60 days old.

So from the included curve and knowing the day after  planting the amount of water needed to replace the water used by the crop can  be calculated and if irrigation is used what frequency will need to be used  when applying water.  The application  rates and frequency of running the irrigation system should also be based on  the amount of water added to the soil profile from natural precipitation by  accounting for the inches of water applied via rainfall.

One last note on knowing available water in the soil  profile, the farmer should consider using some form of soil moisture  measuring.  Three available methods  include the use of tensiometers, electrical resistance meters or capacitance meters.  Two of these three are explained in the UGA  Bulletin #974.  The soil moisture meters  will allow the farmer to have a better idea of what moisture is available and  should provide some guidance on available water and irrigation needs.

Other methods of helping schedule irrigation is the UGA Easy  Pan method (UGA Bulletin #1201), the Irrigator Pro program developed by  USDA-ARS and many of the irrigation companies now have some form of irrigation  scheduling methods available.

Overall, knowing what the plant needs along with what can be  supplied from rainfall or irrigation can help the farmer supply ample water to  the peanuts while not wasting water.

Growth Stage-Water Curve


          A good method for irrigating peanut is a modification of  the original UGA recommended irrigation strategy of applying 2 inches of water  per week (minus rainfall) starting once peanut plants initiate blooming. In the  modified version we follow the water curve for peanut and apply less water  during weeks 5-6 (early bloom) and 7-9 (early pegging) and wait to apply  maximum water rates (1.5 – 2.0 inches per week) for peanut in weeks 10-17 (peak  pegging, pod fill). In weeks 18-20 we back down on the amount of water. During  this time of the growing season we do not want to over water for fear of initiating  limb rot. In the last three weeks we want to eliminate drought stress that can  increase risk of aflatoxin. Here is a schedule for the Growth Stage-Water Curve  (Modified UGA Extension) Irrigation Strategy:

Irrigation amount  (inches) per week for peanut.

Weeks    of Growing Season

1.5    inch maximum

2.0    inch maximum
















We researched it at a 2-inch maximum and a 1.5-inch maximum.  The reason for that was we know there are some growers that have fields that  can’t receive one-inch of water without excessive runoff. Therefore, we tested  it with two applications of 0.75 inches twice a week and two applications at  1.0 inches twice a week. In the table below are the 1.5 and 2.0-inch maximum  strategies in case any of your growers want to use this strategy for irrigating  peanut.

The key in early season irrigation on peanut is to not apply  too much water. Be judicious with early season irrigation events and save them  for later (weeks 10-17, or days 70-126) in the season when the water demand is  higher. This is especially true for producers irrigating from surface water  resources.  We just don’t  need to water the crop too much early. The water demand curve indicates the  requirement is low prior to peak pegging and pod fill.

However, if you want more vine growth then the water the peanuts get the first 30 days will do a lot to promote larger vines.

Posted in Agriculture, irrigation, Peanuts, Water | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Corn Corn Corn Water Water Water

Posted by romeethredge on May 18, 2013

Growers are busy watering corn this week as it has turned off dry. Some corn is head high (V9 or so) and  the tassel will soon emerge so water is needed for top yields. It needs over a quarter of an inch per day at this stage.





I’m seeing a little more NCLB disease this week but only in conservation tillage corn behind a crop of corn last year. I’m seeing lots of round spots due to herbicide drift. We are also seeing a fair amount of Common Rust. Which is a cool season rust that does not cause us any real problem at all.

We have a plot here as part of the “Southern  Corn Rust IPM-pipe” sentinel plot monitoring program ( Go to the web site to see Southern rust area updates as to where its been found.

Common rust is darker than Southern rust and often goes through to the leaf underside.

Common rust is darker than Southern rust and often goes through to the leaf underside.

Common rust is no real problem for us.

Common rust is no real problem for us.

Another curiosity that we are seeing is spider mites in corn. They are on some lower leaves but should not cause yield loss unless they get much worse.

Spider Mites

Spider Mites

Spider mites.

Spider mites.

Here's Caleb, Dr. Kemeraits man who is checking corn for disease in a rust resistant and a non resistant hybrid for the US “Southern Corn Rust IPM-pipe” sentinel plot monitoring program (

Here’s Caleb, Dr. Kemerait’s man who is checking corn for disease in a rust resistant and a non resistant hybrid for the US “Southern Corn Rust IPM-pipe” sentinel plot monitoring program (




Posted in Corn, Entomology, Plant Pathology, Water | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

State Modified Trap Competition

Posted by romeethredge on May 18, 2013

It was a good day of shooting clays at the State 4-H S.A.F.E. (Shooting Awareness Fun and Education) event held near Madison, Ga. There were about 24,000 shots fired as close to 1000 young folks competed at this event from all over the state.

Seminole County was well represented by 15 shooters divided into Junior,7th and 8th graders, and Senior,9th through 12th graders, teams. We started this year with 24 students that learned a lot and we had 15 that qualified for this state competition by hitting 16 of 25 targets at the regional competition if they are juniors and breaking 20 out of 25 targets if they are seniors. Thanks to the work of our volunteer coaches for all their work.

We didn’t place in the very top but the young folks did well. We had two 24 out of 25 shooters , David Bright and Carson O’Brien and for the second year in a row we had a senior that hit a perfect 25 of 25. Last year Colby Hunter did it and this year 11th grader Jesse Ethredge, broke every clay presented to him. His main coach this year was Tommy Hunter and he taught him well. Jesse went on to the shootoff and broke 7 of 10 at the doubles station. See photo below where you can see 2 clays out in front. This wasn’t enough for a top 5 placing but we are all proud of him and our whole team this year.

Project S.A.F.E. Objectives

  • Enhance youth development of self-concept, character and personal growth through safe, educational and socially acceptable involvement in shooting activities.

  • To involve youth in a life skills program that teaches safe and responsible use of firearms including sound decision-making, self-discipline and concentration.

  • To promote the highest standards of safety, sportsmanship and ethical behavior.

  • To expose participants to the broad array of vocational and life-long avocation activities related to shooting sports.

  • To strengthen families through participation in life-long recreational activities.

  • To complement and enhance the impact of existing safety, shooting and hunter education programs using experiential (hands on) educational methods and progressive development of skills and abilities.




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Jesse after hitting a perfect score with coaches Tommy Hunter and Steve Whittaker.

Jesse after hitting a perfect score with coaches Tommy Hunter and Steve Whittaker.Doubles shootoff. Notice the two clays out front.

Senior Sammy Alday's last shoot as a 4-H'er. He's been a good team leader.

Senior Sammy Alday’s last shoot as a 4-H’er. He’s been a good team leader.


Notice the clay in midair. This is one of our juniors that did extremely well.

Notice the clay in midair. This is one of our juniors that did extremely well.


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


Posted by romeethredge on May 18, 2013

Commercial Vegetables are growing well after a slow start with our cool spring, Here’s Randolph County agent Brock Ward with some of our snap beans that are putting on beans and will soon be harvested by machine.

Below him is Jarod Fulford with some seedless watermelons.

Next is a cantaloupe that is swelling fast. It will grow its netting in future days.

And at the bottom we have some good squash. They are producing prolifically now. Can you tell that these are 2 different varieties? look at the stem.



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

Question of the Week – Seagulls

Posted by romeethredge on May 15, 2013

My last question was about 2 seagulls that seemed mad at me. We were on Shell Island in Panama City, Florida. They were Laughing Gulls (Leucophaeus atricilla). They had calmed down by the time I snapped this photo._DSC4630


This week’s question is as follows.

What is this crop pictured here?



Posted in Wildlife | 1 Comment »

Buggywhipping in Corn

Posted by romeethredge on May 15, 2013

Buggywhipping in corn has been common this year due to the wide temperature variances we have seen during the life of this corn crop. Corn leaves emerge from the whorl and if they get caught and can’t unfurl correctly, its called buggywhipping.  I guess because it looks kind of like a bullwhip. This can also be caused by insect injury and chemical injury. Usually the unfurling is just delayed and in a few days the leaves unfurl, sometimes with a tear in one of the leaves. Also you almost always see very yellow leaves that have not been exposed to the sun. In many fields this year we have seen a small percentage of this. It should not affect yield.

A County Agent in Florida, Mace Bauer, has a good report on this problem at this link


Here's how the corn looks as it comes out of the buggywhipping.

Here’s how the corn looks as it comes out of the buggywhipping.

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

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