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Delta Center Field Day Is Sept. 2

MU research farm offers latest on Bootheel crop research and grower challenges.

September 3, 2010

3 Min Read

Missouri farmers are invited to the University of Missouri Delta Research Center Field Day, Sept. 2 at Portageville. The event will offer tours covering research and recommendations for soybeans, cotton and rice, and the latest on irrigation of crops. Scientists will also address weed control, soil fertility and disease issues that many farmers face.

At the rice and cotton tour, MU entomologist Kelly Tindall will speak about choosing the right seed treatment for rice production. Currently farmers can choose between seed treated with Demacor or Cruiser. Tindall will discuss their respective strengths and weaknesses. "It's necessary to understand what pest complex you are targeting," she says. "This is a decision you make at planting and can impact your positive net return." Tindall also will talk about a multi-state effort to track insecticide resistance in stinkbugs.

Won Jung, an MU rice researcher, will review best management practices for rice and the feasibility of growing medium-grain rice instead of the staple long-grain rice in southeast Missouri. Greg Yielding of the U.S. Rice Producers Association will also speak.

On the soybean tour, MU research specialist Jeremy Angotti and MU soybean breeder Grover Shannon will discuss variety testing and conventional varieties.

Jason Weirich, an MU Extension weed scientist, will talk of growing herbicide-resistance problems and the most troublesome weeds. A big topic of discussion will be the growing problem of Palmer amaranth pigweed. "Treatment recommendations are changing back to the use of a soil residual herbicide with different modes of action," he says. "By using a soil residual with different modes of action we can keep some weeds from coming up and use a contact herbicide to kill the plant by uptake through the leaves."

On the soil fertility tour, MU Extension agronomist Gene Stevens will talk about getting the most out of your limited dollars when deciding on fertilizer applications. Andrea Jones, senior research specialist, will discuss benefits of controlled-release fertilizers.

David Dunn, manager of the soil testing labs at Delta Center, will talk about soil test recommendations. He notes a three-year comparison of soil testing labs showed that recommendations differed for the same samples. "There's a difference in philosophy," Dunn said. "Some labs recommend applying potassium and phosphorous regardless of the levels removed, whereas MU labs tend to recommend not applying any more if we believe there's enough nutrients to carry your field through for the next three years." 

The irrigation and disease tour will include discussions of remote monitoring and control of irrigation by USDA agriculture engineer Earl Vories and wireless irrigation technology by MU irrigation specialist Joe Henggeler.

Tim Kavan from the Missouri Department of Conservation will speak on planting for wildlife, and MU plant pathologist Allen Wrather will talk about ways to mitigate soybean cyst nematode. Wrather reports that root-knot nematode and soybean cyst nematode are present in half of fields in the state.

"Planting resistant varieties is most effective to deal with nematodes, but farmers also need to rotate soybeans with corn to help manage cyst nematodes," Wrather says. "In the worst cases, yield losses can be as high as 75%, so farmers need to remain diligent in addressing this problem."

Tours will start at 9 a.m. For driving directions and other information, visit the website aes.missouri.edu/delta or call 573-379-5431.

Source: MU Cooperative Media Group

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