Seminole Crop E News

Agricultural News for Farmers and Agribusiness in SW Georgia

Posts Tagged ‘oats’

Question of the Week – Loose Smut

Posted by romeethredge on April 17, 2015

Last week I had a photo of some oats with a black powdery look where the grain should be. This is a disease called loose smut. You’ll often see this disease in very very low levels. I’ve seen it at higher levels where someone saved their own seed for several years and didn’t use a systemic seed treatment.

It also occurs in wheat and here’s an excerpt from the UGA Wheat production guide about it.

“Loose smut causes the tissues in the head to be replaced by masses of powdery spores. The fungus spores invade the embryo of the developing seed and the fungus survives there until the seed germinates.  These smut pathogens are only transmitted by seed. Planting certified seed is an effective method to control smut diseases because seed fields are carefully inspected. Seed treatment with systemic fungicides is an inexpensive way to achieve nearly complete control of loose smut.”



This week someone brought me this monster to identify. What is it?


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

Barley Yellow Dwarf, Oats & Wheat

Posted by romeethredge on February 11, 2015

Small grains have looked rough this year for several reasons. Oats have suffered as they are more susceptible to cold and we’ve had another cold winter.  Also, we’ve had leaching rains that removed nutrients. Most recently we are seeing some Barley Yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) transmitted by aphids. The darker aphid, Bird cherry- oat, is worse about causing this in small grains. We are seeing a good many of them now.


I talked to Brooks county Agent, Stephanie Hollifield and they have them there as well in oats and she’s seeing symptoms of BYDV. She has a good write up concerning this on her blog with some good photos at this link, Oats & Barley Yellow Dwarf.


 Here’s some info on aphids from Dr. David Buntin (Entomologist at UGA Griffin) handy for your review: (more details available here:

Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that can be found in wheat anytime during the growing season. The most common aphids found on wheat are the bird cherry-oat aphid, rice root aphid, greenbug, corn leaf aphid, and English grain aphid. The first four occur mostly in the fall and winter. Only the greenbug causes direct feeding damage that appears speckled brown and discolored with some leaf curling. The other aphids usually do not cause obvious feeding damage. The English grain aphid is mainly present in the spring and can reach large numbers on flag leaves and developing grain heads. Damage from this pest can reduce kernel size and lower grain test weight. For the most part, beneficial insects such as lady beetles are not active during the winter and only exert some control over aphids during the spring in wheat.

Aphids also vector a viral disease named barley yellow dwarf (BYD) and a related disease called cereal yellow dwarf. Wheat and barley can be severely damaged, but oats are most susceptible to this disease. BYD is present in most fields in most years throughout Georgia. Yield losses of 5-15% are common but losses can exceed 30% during severe epidemics. Infection can occur from seedling emergence through heading, but yield loss is greatest when plants are infected as seedlings in the fall. Although all aphids can potentially transmit certain strains of the virus, infections in the Southeast are mostly associated with infestations of bird cherry-oat aphid and rice root aphid. Planting date is the single most important management practice, with early plantings generally have greater aphid numbers and greater BYD incidence than late plantings.

Systemic seed treatments, imidacloprid (Gaucho, Attendant, Axcess), thiamethoxam (Cruiser), and clothianidin (NipsIt Inside), are available for controlling aphids in the fall and winter and may reduce infection rates of BYD. These seed treatments are more effective in the northern half of the seed treatments have been inconsistent in control and are not recommended for routine use.A single, well-timed insecticide application of the insecticide lambda cyhalothrin (Karate Zeon, Silencer, and similar products) or gamma cyhalothrin (Declare) also can control aphids, reduce the incidence of BYD and increase yields. The best time for treatment in northern Georgia usually is about 25 – 35 days after planting although an application at full tiller also may be beneficial. In southern Georgia, the best treatment time usually is at full-tiller stage in early to mid-February. But, scout fields for aphids at 25 – 35 days after planting and during warm periods in January to determine if an insecticide application is needed. A lambda cyhalothrin or gamma cyhalothrin treatment at full tiller can be applied with top-dress nitrogen. OP insecticides, such as dimethoate and methyl parathion, also will control aphids but are not effective in preventing barley yellow dwarf infection.

To sample aphids, inspect plants in 12 inches of row in fall and 6 inches of row in winter. In spring, inspect 10 grain heads (+ flag leaf) per sample. Count all aphids on both the flag leaf and head for making control decisions. Sample plants at 8 to 16 locations per field.

Treat when populations reach or exceed the following thresholds at various stages of development:
Seedlings: 2-3/row ft,
30-60 days after planting: 6/row ft;
6-10 inch plants: 1 to 2/tiller
boot to heading: 5/stem
heading to dough stage: 10/stem
hard dough to maturity: damage not economic.

Posted in Agriculture, Fertilization, Forages, Wheat | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Cold burn on Small Grains

Posted by romeethredge on January 19, 2015

We are seeing some cold damage on small grains due to the very cold temperatures around Jan 8th. The cold duration was a problem as well. Some small grain growing for forage had been fertilized and was very lush and was affected a little worse.

If small grain heads were emerged we would have possibly seen problems but it’s much too early for that. All we really have seen is leaf  damage and burn and a slow down in growth. Moist soil holds heat better so you may see worse damage where soils were dry.

Usually the tallest part of the plant is damaged the worst due to being further from the warm soil. On Jan 8, the low was 18 degrees but the 2 inch soil temperature averaged 45 degrees for the day.


Here’s some oats being grown for cattle forage that got bit by the cold.



Here is some wheat being grown for grain with some leaf damage.

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Posted in Agriculture, Wheat | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Oat Planting

Posted by romeethredge on October 16, 2014

We’ve been talking about oats for grain. It’s too early to plant it now if you want to harvest the grain. Some folks want to grow some for seed for the following year. We need to wait until close to Thanksgiving for that because if we plant it too early the heads will shoot up when we will be having some hard cold and they will be damaged.

Of course lots of oats are being planted now for grazing and that is fine. We had problems with caterpillars and seedling disease in the past few weeks but we are hopefully past  the worst of that now.

Here’s a good UGA publication available on the web concerning Southern Small Grains  and it has a good section concerning Oats with the following valuable planting  chart.

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Mares eat Oats and Does Eat Oats

Posted by romeethredge on May 23, 2014


Oat harvest is going on now in deep south Georgia.  The yield and quality look pretty good despite the cloudy, rainy wet weather they grew through. Here’s Jim Dozier and his daughter Mary Anna checking out the crop as the combine looms behind them.

Oats are used for a winter forage for cattle and is popular for a cover crop as well.



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Compaction in Small Grains

Posted by romeethredge on January 3, 2014

Soil compaction can cause real problems in small grains. New Decatur County Ag Agent, Justin Ballew, looked at this field of oats with me yesterday. The grower said it wasn’t growing well. We used the compaction meter and in the green strips it was soft but there was an apparent shallow hardpan in the poor growth areas. The green strips corresponded with where the field was ripped at corn planting time.

Some sort of deep tillage ahead of planting small grains is important in most cases.

photo (7) photo (8)


Posted in Wheat | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Oat problems

Posted by romeethredge on December 20, 2013

We are having some oat problems. Oats are grown mainly for cattle to graze but we also grow it for grain, mainly to use for seed the next year, and for a covercrop. Cattle love to graze oats and they have nice wide leaf blades. Our newer varieties have had genetic resistance to rust but last year that broke down and we saw it come into our oats.

We are seeing that again. Today, I found some rust here in Seminole County. What to do about it is the question. If you are grazing it you can’t put on fungicides or you could but you would have to wait for the required time before you put the cattle back into the oat patch. If you are growing oats for seed then a fungicide may be warranted if rust is nearby.

Before you spray , check for aphids as they are abundant now and can carry Barley Yellow Dwarf Disease.

Here’s a close up of the rust on the leaf that  I found today.

oat rust1

Here’s a further off shot.


Dr. Alfredo Martinez, UGA Plant Pathologist provided me this information concerning fungicides.

Wheat and oats fungicide chart common questions

Propiconazole(tilt) YES YESTilt can be applied up to 45 days prior to harvest Yes.Do not apply within 30 days of harvest for forage or hayPage 8 of label  
Metconazole(Caramba) YES YES30 days minimum time from application to harvest. No   livestock feeding restrictions) NOT sure, no clear label for forage. It says “no livestock   feeding restrictions”  
Pyraclostrobin(Headline) YES YESApply no later than the beginning of flowering (Feekes   10.5; Zadok’s 59) YESDo not harvest grain or feed green-chopped oats within 14   days of last applicationPage 20 of label Up to feekes 10.5 no more than this growth stage
Azoxystrobin(Quadris) YES NO NO  
Prothioconazole(Proline) YES YESDo not apply within 30 days of harvest NO  
Propiconazole + triflouxastrobin(Stratego) YES YESDo not apply after Feekes growth stage 8 (the ligule of   the flag leaf emerges). Do not apply within 40 days of harvest YESOnly one app. Do not graze treated area for 30 days; do   not harvest in 30 days for forage or 45 days for hay page 8 on label  
Prothioconazole + triflouxastrobin(Stratego YLD) YES NO NO  
Propiconazole + azoxystrobin(Quilt) YES Yes Yes  Do not apply within 7 days of harvest for forage or hay
Quilt XL YES Yes Yes  Do not apply within 7 days of harvest for forage or hay
prothioconazole  +   tebuconazole(Prosaro) YES NO NO  
Pyraclostrobin + metconazole(Twinline) YES YESApply no later than the beginning of flowering (Feekes   10.5; Zadok’s 59) Not sure. It says do not harvest BARLEY for hay  14 days of last application. No directions   for oats.  
Tebuconazole + trifloxystrobin(Absolute) YES NO NO  
Tebuconazole(Folicur) YESNot for powdery mildew




 Here’s another informational chart provided by Dr. Dennis Hancock, UGA Forage Scientist.

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Posted in Agriculture, Entomology, Forages, Plant Pathology | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Oat Rust

Posted by romeethredge on February 1, 2013

We are seeing some rust developing on oats being grown for grazing. There’s nothing labeled to use to combat this problem and with changing environmental conditions it may not worsen as new leaves emerge. There is something we can do next year is to use varieties that are resistant to rust. This isn’t a sure fix either as the rust fungal diseases are good at shifting races over time so that varieties that once were resistant sometimes lose that to new rust races.

To tell if spots you see are rust, just wipe the leaf and the rusty spores come off on your hand in most cases.

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

Burndown of Oats

Posted by romeethredge on March 9, 2012

This oat covercrop was sprayed with glyphosate a few weeks ago and now will be just right for strip till planting  of cotton later.

Posted in Agriculture, Cotton, Weeds | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

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