Agriculture

Wed
09
Oct

What's Up at the FSA Office?

by Jeremy Leitz, Allamakee County Executive Director (563) 568-2148

Upcoming Deadlines/Dates
December 6: Market Facilitation Program; Dairy Margin Coverage Program for 2020

Market Facilitation Program (MFP)
Signup for the 2019 Market Facilitation Program began July 29 and continues through December 6, 2019.  For non-specialty crops such as corn, soybeans and alfalfa, payments are based on a single-county payment rate multiplied by a farm’s total plantings of MFP-eligible crops in aggregate in 2019. Those per-acre payments are not dependent on which of those crops are planted in 2019. A producer’s total payment-eligible plantings cannot exceed total 2018 plantings. The Allamakee County payment rate is $40 per planted acre.

Wed
09
Oct

Fall burndown treatments for winter annual weeds


Horseweed seedings ... Figure 1. Horseweed seedlings September 26, 2019 near Ames. Submitted photo.

by Meaghan Anderson, Field Agronomist, Dr. Bob Hartzler, Professor of Agronomy, Prashant Jha, Associate Professor, Integrated Crop Management News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

The plentiful rain in September has provided ideal conditions for establishment of winter annual weeds, thus many no-till fields will have dense stands of these weeds going into winter (Fig. 1). The wetter springs we have encountered recently complicate getting spring burndown applications made in a timely matter.

Fall burndown applications are an option that may be beneficial in fields with a history of problems with winter annuals (e.g. horseweed/marestail, field pennycress, henbit). The advantages of fall applications include more consistent control since winter annuals are smaller, and there will be less weed biomass next spring that may interfere with planter operations. Consider the following before choosing this management option:

Wed
09
Oct

Fall weed control in pastures


Controlling weeds in pastures ... Controlling weeds in pastures increases the quality of forage available for animals. Submitted photo.

Foliage of weeds ... Foliage of weeds must be in good condition to obtain effective control. Submitted photo.

by Dr. Bob Hartzler, Professor of Agronomy, Meaghan Anderson, Field Agronomist, Integrated Crop Management News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

Fall is one of the best times for managing perennial and biennial weeds found in pastures or other areas maintained in perennial grass. As perennials prepare for the upcoming winter they move energy reserves from shoots to their perennial vegetative reproductive structures (e.g. rhizomes, perennial rootstocks). Systemic herbicides applied at this time are translocated along with the energy reserves to the reproductive structures, therefore providing more consistent control than applications made at most other times of the year. 

Wed
02
Oct

What's Up at the FSA Office?

by Jeremy Leitz, Allamakee County Executive Director (563) 568-2148

Upcoming Deadlines/Dates
December 6: Market Facilitation Program

Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) Payments
We will soon be issuing payments for the Conservation Reserve Program.  CRP payments begin with those contracted prior to 2008. Barring no computer delays, those payments will begin being issued October 2. For CRP contracts that began after the 2008 Farm Bill, payments will be issued starting October 9. Remember that these take a few days to be deposited into your account.

Wed
02
Oct

Iowa farm income appears higher, but farm values decline

The Iowa farm costs and returns report compares income and cost data for 600 Iowa producers

The “2018 Iowa Farm Costs and Returns” analysis is now available, and despite a slight increase in net farm income last year, farmers saw another year of tight margins and a decrease in total farm assets and net farm worth.

The average accrual net farm income (adjusted for inventory changes and accrued expenses) increased by 6% in 2018, to $58,832.

“It wasn’t a huge increase in income, but at least we didn’t see a decline,” said Alejandro Plastina, assistant professor and extension economist at Iowa State University. “However, the rate of return on assets remains very low, compared to historical averages.”

Wed
02
Oct

Corn earworm picks up activity in Iowa


Photo 1 ... Corn earworm adult. Photo by Robert J. Bauernfeind, www.ipmimages.org.

Photo 2 ... Corn earworms are messy feeders, generally active at the ear tip. Photo by Ashley Dean, Iowa State University.

Photo 3 ... Corn earworm caterpillars are variable in color. Photo by Ashley Dean, Iowa State University.

by Dr. Erin Hodgson, Associate Professor and Extension Entomologist Specialist and ANR Crops Team Leader, Integrated Crop Management News and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

Corn earworm  (Photo 1) is common in Iowa corn. It is a migratory pest, migrating from the southern and southeastern U.S. every summer. There are two general fights to the Midwest every summer, but the first flight is not of economic concern. Iowa’s corn is more vulnerable to infestation of the second flight, arriving in late July. Yield losses can occur in late-planted cornfields, where caterpillars can infest >50% of plants. It is more common to see corn earworm issues in sweet corn, white corn, popcorn, and seed fields. Kernel injury can promote ear mycotoxins (e.g., fumonisins and aflatoxins) and further reduce grain quality. The frass (excrement) can also be a contaminant for corn processing.

Wed
25
Sep

What's Up at the FSA Office?

by Jeremy Leitz, Allamakee County Executive Director (563) 568-2148

Upcoming Deadlines/Dates
December 6: Market Facilitation Program

Managed Haying Requests
For those who have stopped in to request managed haying on your CRP ground, make sure the bales are off as soon as possible to avoid killing of the seeding underneath, but no later than September 30. Any seeding destroyed due to the bales needs to be reseeded. 

Payments to Deceased Producers
In order to claim a Farm Service Agency (FSA) payment on behalf of a deceased producer, all program conditions for the payment must have been met before the applicable producer’s date of death.

If a producer earned a FSA payment prior to his or her death, the following is the order of precedence for the representatives of the producer:

Wed
18
Sep

What's Up at the FSA Office?

by Jeremy Leitz, Allamakee County Executive Director (563) 568-2148

Upcoming Deadlines/Dates
September 20: Dairy Margin Coverage Program Sign-Up
December 6: Market Facilitation Program

Managed Haying Requests
For those who have stopped in to request managed haying on your CRP ground, make sure the bales are off as soon as possible to avoid killing of the seeding underneath, but no later than September 30. Any seeding destroyed due to the bales needs to be reseeded. 

USDA Fruit, Vegetable and Wild Rice Planting Rules Unchanged from Previous Farm Bill
Farm Service Agency (FSA) has announced fruit, vegetable and wild rice provisions that affect producers who intend to participate in certain programs authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014 as amended by the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018.

Wed
18
Sep

Iowans to observe Farm Safety Week September 15-21

Farm safety celebrated with proclamation signed by Gov. Reynolds

The Iowa Farm Safety and Health Week will be held September 15-21 in conjunction with the National Farm Safety and Health Week. This year’s national theme is “Shift Farm Safety Into High Gear.”

This is the 76th observance of the National Farm Safety and Health Week. This special week of safety and health observance is still relevant today because agriculture ranks as the most dangerous industry in the United States.

Farm safety week is used by farm safety professionals and organizations to remind those working within agriculture to be cautious. The fall harvest time is typically the busiest season of the year and the time when agriculture reports the largest number of injuries.

Wed
18
Sep

Extra riders on tractors are a high risk for fatality

The National Children’s Center estimates one child dies about every three days in an agriculture-related incident. One common incident where children are harmed is when they are an extra rider on a farm or lawn care tractor.

“Tractor rides have an intrinsic appeal for kids and a willingness for adults to allow them,” said Charles Schwab, professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering with extension and outreach responsibilities at Iowa State University. “The well-intended activity of a child riding on the tractor with a parent or grandparent is an extremely dangerous situation that too often ends in death.”

Around one-fourth of tractor deaths each year are from runovers. These usually happen when an extra rider falls under the back tractor wheel and is mortally crushed. An easy saying to remember is: “One seat, one rider,” and as adults it is our responsibility to keep youth safe by not allowing them to be the extra rider on tractors. Be firm and say no.

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