While planting continues this week, disease and insects are taking aim at the crops that are already in the ground. The cold, wet weather that arrived just after much of our early corn was planted is fostering seedling disease in many areas, according to Brian Early with Dupont Pioneer. “It should start to show up in corn by the end of this week or early next,” he said. “The disease will attack the mesocotyl between the seed and the upper part of the plant. Generally, it will look like a good stand, and then it will start to go backward as the disease eats on that connecting tissue.” Some soil borne diseases are already showing up in early planted soybeans.
Meanwhile, information from Purdue indicates that black cutworm pressure will be significant this year. Early says that activity is already taking place in Southern Indiana, “It takes about 300 growing degree units for that to happen, so we are seeing some cutting from black cutworms in the south and moving into central Indiana.” He added, in the north, it will take another week for the larvae to get big enough to start cutting.
Early says much of the early planted corn is not looking very good right now, but should recover, “There is a lot of corn with a very sickly yellow color, but as soon as the roots get developed it will shape up.” Listen to the complete agronomy update under the agronomy tab.