Rainfall, air and soil temperatures, degree-days, soil moistures, and other current and historical weather data for the University of Minnesota Southwest Research and Outreach Center (SWROC), a little spot about two miles west of Lamberton, MN, can be found at SWROC Weather.
So far, it has been a great spring in SW and much of Minnesota. In a welcome change to the previous three years, crops are getting planted timely and into good seedbeds. Surface soils are dry in some areas and could use moisture to help with even crop emergence and pre-emerge herbicide performance. It won’t take much as soil moistures seem good from a couple inches on down.
Problems with plant roots plugging drainage tile lines seems to be unusually common this year. The questions I’ve received are mostly associated with cover crop blends. Hopefully, we will be able to sort out which species are causing the problem.
Things that go bump in the night
The same weather that has led to the fast spring for fieldwork has kept immigrating black cutworm moth flights into Minnesota low. Last week, cooperator’s pheromone traps started to pick up a few more immigrants. Looking at the forecast we should see an influx of black cutworms (and other migratory insects) this week and next. For the latest cooperative black cutworm trapping network report (4); view the Black Cutworm Reporting Network page. In addition to black cutworm, we have some cooperators running true armyworm pheromone traps. A trap in Swift County picked up a small flight on April 29.
Planting is complete in many areas. I managed to refrain from including any pictures of elongating corn radicles. That’s what the rest of the internet is for.
Yield potential of most fields is now 350 bushels/acre or but that will decline as the growing season progresses.
Start to scout corn fields as soon as they can be rowed.
Planting progress is well ahead of normal and some have finished planting.
What a difference a year makes. I just talked to a soybean grower who wanted to know if he should switch to a longer maturity soybean. It’s a good problem to have.
The early soybean planting and relatively dry weather, still favors soybean aphid populations. Egg hatch has begun on buckthorn.
Wheat, Oats, Rye, Barley
Winter wheat and rye wintered well. On the other hand, there are ongoing winter barley variety trials at the SWROC. Once again, these trails have shown that SW Minnesota is not Europe.
Winged English grain aphids and aster leafhoppers have shown up with this week’s strong south winds this week. Both migratory species were found at low populations in cereal rye.
In this part of the world, alfalfa survived the winter well. Pest populations are very low with no alfalfa weevil or potato leafhoppers yet observed.
University of Minnesota Southwest Research & Outreach Center
23669 130th Street
Lamberton, MN 56152
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