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Strategic Farming: Field Notes
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Strategic Farming: Field Notes

Author: UMN Crops Team

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Join the University of Minnesota Extension Crops team in addressing all your crop-related questions this growing season, from soil fertility, agronomics, pest management and more. We will tackle issues as they arise to help you make better crop management decisions this season.
21 Episodes
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For August 25, 2021, the special guests included Anna Cates, Extension soil health specialist, Liz Stahl, Extension educator - crops, and Troy Salzer, Ag production systems educator in St. Louis County. Moderators were Jared Goplen and Ryan Miller, extension educators in crops. The drought has many considering which cover crops may be the best option, or whether a cover crop will even grow in the dry soil conditions. This session gave an update on how things have progressed this year, in addition to the management recommendations to consider if cover crops are used for forage, soil health benefits, or both. 
For August 18, 2021, special guests included Dr. Dean Malvick, Extension plant pathologist, and Dr. Angie Peltier, Extension educator-crops in northwestern MN, to talk about current disease issues in the state, even during drought conditions. Malvick described late-season diseases that are beginning to show up across the state, and Peltier showcased the Digital Crop Doc, a U of M online tool growers can use to identify crop disease. Dr. Seth Naeve also discussed soybean yield components in late August. Seed number may have been limited due to hot dry conditions earlier on, but soybean plants are still able to increase seed size and weight in late August into September.
Today is August 11, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Ryan Miller and Jared Goplen.  The special guests included Dr. Debalin Sarangi, Extension weed management specialist and Dr. Tom Peters, Extension sugarbeet agronomist to discuss weed management observations from 2021. There are waterhemp, velvetleaf, ragweed, and grassy weed escapes throughout Minnesota. We discussed some of the reasons for these weed escapes, as well as how to address these issues going into next year.
Today is August 4, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations. Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Anthony Hanson and Ryan Miller.  This episode featured Dr. Ken Ostlie, Corn Extension Entomologist, and Dr. Bob Koch, Soybean Extension Entomologist, both with the University of Minnesota Department of Entomology as well as Bruce Potter, IPM Extension Specialist based out of Lamberton, MN. Drought conditions during the growing season have exacerbated some pest issues, such as spider mites. Soybean aphid so far has only been found at low densities in most fields across the state, but there is still potential for aphid populations to reach damaging levels in August. Growers have reported corn rootworm adults at noticeable densities, and pests such as armyworms have been moving into corn from nearby grasses.Link to Crop Management Pest tour registration for 8/10/21
Today is July 28, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations. Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators David Nicolai and Jared Goplen.  The special guests featured Dr. Craig Sheaffer, University of Minnesota Forage Agronomist, Nathan Drewitz, Extension Educator in Stearns, Benton, and Morrison counties, and Troy Salzer, Extension Educator in St. Louis County. The drought conditions in Minnesota and the Upper Midwest have continued to worsen. Crops are drying up, which has many concerned about the tightening forage supplies. Today’s episode discussed forage establishment, early corn silage harvest, utilizing alternative crops as forages, utilizing CRP hay, as well as how drought conditions affect forage yield and quality.
Today is July 16, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators David Nicolai and Jared Goplen.  The special guests included Dr. Debalin Sarangi, Extension weed management specialist, Dr. Tom Peters, Extension sugarbeet agronomist, Dr. Seth Naeve, Extension soybean agronomist, and Bruce Potter, Integrated Pest Management Specialist, to discuss cupped soybean leaves. The fact that many fields of Enlist and other traited soybeans are showing these symptoms has many wondering if dicamba drift or volatilization may be to blame. Yet, reports of isolated soybean fields that have been sprayed with simple one-product herbicides and now show symptoms abound. So, what is to blame for all this cupping in drought-stricken regions of Minnesota and the Dakotas in 2021?
Our University of Minnesota Extension staff: Dr. Dan Kaiser, Extension Soil Specialist and Brad Carlson, Extension Educator in Nutrient and Water Quality discussed the proper use of diagnostic tools such as crop tissue testing and nitrogen basal corn stalk testing to provide a checkup on current crop growth and nutrient needs in Minnesota. This summer Minnesota crop growers have been challenged given the variable weather and soil moisture conditions across the state. Dr. Kaiser outlined the proper timing if tissue testing for both corn and soybeans along and which crop nutrients were likely to be highlighted in the results of the corn tissue tests such as potassium. Brad Carlson reviewed the movement and utilization for nitrogen in corn given the drier than normal weather conditions and variable precipitation patterns. Brad also commented on the validity of corn basal stalk testing and its relationship to predicting present and future nitrogen needs in Minnesota crops.
Today is July 7, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators David Nicolai and Anthony Hanson.  The special guests included Dr. Dean Malvick, Extension plant pathologist, and Dr. Angie Peltier, Extension Educator-crops in northwestern MN, to discuss corn and soybean pathogens. Being in a drought does not mean diseases will entirely go away. This episode discusses which diseases will likely be problematic this year, and what management considerations may be needed.
Today is June 30, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and Anthony Hanson.  The special guests included Dr. Ian MacRae, University of Minnesota Extension Entomologist, and Bruce Potter, Extension IPM specialist, to discuss insect management issues to be on the lookout for this year. Hot and dry conditions can mean we may see different pest complexes than most years, such as spider mites and grasshoppers. Regulatory changes for insecticides, such as chlorpyrifos, are also pending and could significantly affect what insecticide options growers have left to use this year.
Water use for early season crops and the stress caused by drought are becoming key areas of focus in late-June as drought has intensified across the state. Some areas have received rain, but crops across the state are showing varying indications of water stress. In this episode, panelists discuss to what degree crops may be able to recover if they receive adequate rain and how to assess the severity of water stressed crops.
Today is June 16, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Ryan Miller and Dave Nicolai.  The special guests included Dr. Dennis Todey, Director of the USDA Midwest Climate Hub, and Bruce Potter, Extension IPM specialist, to discuss weather and pest updates. Dr. Todey discussed the current, short- and medium-range outlooks for precipitation and temperature. Bruce Potter gave updates on pest activity, including alfalfa weevil, corn rootworm, soybean gall midge and spider mites, and gave a preview of SWROC's June 23rd Pest resistance webinar.
Today is June 9, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and Dave Nicolai.  The special guests included Drs. Debalin Sarangi, Extension weed management specialist, Tom Peters, Extension sugarbeet agronomist, and Jochum Wiersma, Extension small grains specialist, to discuss the hot and dry conditions, and the implications this has for both weed control and small grain yield potential.  
Today is June 2, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations. Today's session featured University of Minnesota Extension Specialists, Dr. Dan Kaiser, Dr. Fabian Fernandez, Dr. Jeff Vetsch, and Dr. Melissa Wilson to discuss Nitrogen fertilizer considerations on corn as side dressing operations start up throughout the state. Transcript
Today is May 28, 2021, and this morning we recorded our first bonus episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Ryan Miller and Jared Goplen.  The special guests included University of Minnesota Extension Specialists, Dr. Jeff Coulter, Dr. Seth Naeve, Dr. Jochum Wiersma, and North Dakota State University Extension Agronomist Dr. Hans Kandel to discuss the recent freezing temperatures and what that means for crops in northern Minnesota and North Dakota. Transcript
Today is May 25, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of M Extension Crops Educators Ryan Miller and Antony Hanson.  The special guests included University of Minnesota Extension Educator Nathan Drewitz to discuss early season alfalfa progress and agronomic issues that have popped up so far this year. Transcript
Today is May 19, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and Antony Hanson.  The special guests included University of Minnesota Extension Agronomists Dr. Seth Naeve, Dr. Jeff Coulter, and Dr. Jochum Wiersma to discuss early season stand establishment and scouting concerns for soybeans, corn, and small grains. Transcript
Today is May 12, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded another episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and David Nicolai.  The special guests included Dr. Debalin Sarangi, University of Minnesota Extension corn & soybean weed specialist, and Dr. Tom Peters, University of Minnesota sugarbeet weed specialist, to talk about weed control this year and how the current spring weather and soil condition might influence our management decisions.Transcript
Today is May 5, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded the second episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and Anthony Hanson.  The special guests included Bruce Potter, Integrated Pest Management Specialist with the University of Minnesota and Stephan Melson, a crop consultant with United AgTech, LLC in Trimont, MN to discuss how the growing season is progressing as well as pest and agronomic issues that are cropping up so far this year.  Transcript
Today is April 28, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded the second episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and Dave Nicolai.  The special guest was Ed Usset, Grain Marketing Specialist with Center for Farm Financial Management at the University of Minnesota.  Ed addressed the most recent run-up in crop grain prices and things farmers should be considering while making plans to market their grain.  Also on the line today were Jeff Coulter and Seth Naeve; they addressed current corn and soybean management considerations for the current situation.  Transcript
Today is April 21, 2021, and earlier this morning we recorded the first episode of the Strategic Farming: Field Notes program.  The Field Notes program is a weekly update on the current crop situation and crop management considerations.  Today’s session was moderated by U of MN Extension Crops Educators Jared Goplen and Dave Nicolai.  The special guest was Dennis Todey, Director of the Midwest Climate Hub in Ames, Iowa.  Dennis addressed the current weather outlook as it pertains to row crop management.  Also on the line today were Jeff Coulter, Seth Naeve, and Dan Kaiser; they addressed current corn, soybean, and nutrient management considerations for the current situation.  Transcript
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