By Mark A. Badertscher
Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator
OSU Extension Hardin County

It’s August already and most of the corn in our area should have been pollinated by Aug. 1.  Corn pollination should not be a problem this year; pollination problems generally occur during years of dry and hot weather.  However, the excessive water and flooding may cause corn to develop at different rates in the same field affecting tassel and silk emergence and pollination.  This may result in grain maturing at different times in the same field.  Once pollination happens, we can expect 60-65 days until maturity.   Once the corn reaches physiological maturity, it is safe from a killing frost.
 Western Bean Cutworm counts were low again this past week with only one moth caught in the four traps around the county.  I’ve been receiving several questions about the value of silage in the field this year.  It is difficult to determine the value of the corn silage in the field with the growing conditions we had this year and the uneven corn and lack of consistent nutrient uptake.  However, there is a method of pricing corn value in the field for use as silage.  See the article below for more information on this topic.  The big question with this corn will be the nutrient value of the silage.  So if you are considering harvesting corn as silage, it is recommended that you take send a sample to a lab for analysis.

Ohio State University Extension is asking farmers in the Maumee River Basin to help with a water monitoring research project looking at Dissolved Reactive Phosphorus (DRP) losses from fields. Increases in DRP in the watershed have been tied to increased occurrences of Harmful Algal Blooms in Lake Erie. The data collected will help better quantify actual losses from an economic and environmental standpoint, leading to tools that can target high risk fields so cost effective Best Management Practices can be designed that maintain crop productivity while reducing phosphorus losses.  If you are interested in participating in this research, contact me before September 1 and I’ll get you additional information.

There will be a Pumpkin Field Day Aug. 20 at the Western Research Station in South Charleston.  Topics include Current and Unregistered Fungicides for Powdery Mildew, Aerial Imagery Used to Advance Early and Late Season Pest Management in Cucumbers and Pumpkins, Downy Mildew Sentinel Trial, Impact of Insecticides and Fungicides on Squash Bee and Honey Bee Populations, and Row Covers and Trap Crops.  If you are interested in attending, register by August 13.

There will be a Precision Agriculture Day: Combine and Drone Technology that will be held Friday, Aug. 21, at the Champaign County Fairgrounds in Urbana.  This event will feature presentations on decision agriculture, aerial imagery, utilizing field data, nutrient management, My John Deere and MyShed-Case IH. Some of the presenters include Dr. John Fulton, the new OSU specialist in precision ag technology, Ohio Farm Bureau, Integrated Ag Services, and a panel of farmers utilizing aerial imagery technology.  Demonstrations from Case IH, John Deere, and Lexion dealers on combine setup for harvest will take place in the afternoon. Live drone flying demonstrations will also occur during the day.  Register by Aug. 12 for a lunch count.

Have you seen any bagworms in your trees or shrubs this summer?  Bagworms on a shrub or tree can cause excessive defoliation. A severe infestation may kill the plant within one or two seasons.  Bagworms do the most damage on arbor vitae and cedars, but will attack pines, junipers, spruce and at least 130 other trees and shrubs.  They may not harm the deciduous trees, but they spread from these trees to more susceptible evergreens.  The longer a homeowner waits to provide treatment, the more difficult it becomes to control this pest.

Upcoming local events include Ag Council will be meeting at 7 a.m. this Friday, Aug.7, at Henry’s Restaurant.  Feel free to join us to get updated on the latest agriculture and county information.  I plan to share information from the V12 GreenSeeker readings and updated yield projections for our two Corn Response to Nitrogen plots.  A Regional Dairy meeting will be held Monday, Aug. 10, at St. Henry High School, starting at 10 a.m.