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ISSUE 7  JUNE 17, 1999



    CRP EARLY RELEASE - The CRP early release provisions are applicable to contracts
that have been in effect for at least 5 years Participants may be released from CRP without
having to refund previous payments, and liquidated damages are not charged. The effective
release date is 60 days after all participants sign an early release request. The annual rental
payment will be prorated as payments are not earned from the effective release date through
September 30, 1999.

    CRP EARLY LAND PREPARATION - Producers with expiring CRP contracts may
file a request for early land preparation. If you intend to plant a fall crop, you may be approved
to destroy the cover beginning July 1st 1999 or, with a payment reduction as early as May 1st,
1999. If you intend to plant a Spring seeded crop, you may be approved to apply chemical
(burn) beginning August 1, 1999.

    CRP WEED CONTROL - Now is the time to be controlling weeds on CRP acres. It is the
producer's responsibility to check CRP for the presence of Noxious weeds, insect, rodents, or
other weeds that may inhibit the practice. Failure to control the items listed above may result in
CRP payment reductions or CRP contract termination. Spot-checks will be performed in June
by both NRCS and FSA to ensure proper weed control is being performed.

Source: FSA Newsletter



    The Agronomy Seed Farm Field Day tour scheduled for June 30, 1999 has been cancelled.
Wet field conditions and late planting of crop trials is the primary reason. A field tour rescheduled
for late July is an option being considered. Will keep you posted on any further developments or



    Two basic plant types are found in dry edible bean, determinate (bush) or indeterminate (vining
or trailing). Cultivars may be classified according to plant types. For example, navy beans may be
either of the bush or vining types. In the determinate type, stem elongation ceases when the terminal
flower racemes of the main stem or lateral branches have developed. On indeterminate types, flowering
and pod filling will continue simultaneously or alternately as long as temperature and moisture permits
growth to occur.

    The question of dry edible bean maturity has been debated for many years. Compared to many
other plants, the dry edible bean is orderly in its growth and development. There are two basic stages
of growth: The vegetative and the reproductive. Growth at any point in the vegetative stage can be
determined and defined by counting the number of nodes on the main stem. The reproductive stage
begins when the first flower opens and is described and characterized by observing pod development
and seed fill within the developed pod. Both vegetative and reproductive stages can further be
separated into two periods for a total of four major growth periods in the life of a bean plant. They

    1. Germination and stand establishment

    2. Rapid vegetative growth

    3. Flowering and pod development

    4. Pod fill and maturation

    The time required for the two growth periods of germination and stand establishment and flowering
and pod development under the same growing conditions is the same for all varieties. Differences in
maturity of varieties are experienced during the two periods of rapid vegetative growth and pod fill and
maturation. The way it works is that late maturing varieties will require a longer period of time to
pass through the rapid vegetative growth period than will early maturing varieties. This increase in
time results in increased vegetative growth, capable of producing and filling pods over an extended
period of time.

    This sounds simple and straight forward and leads one to wonder why two people can come up
with a different maturity value for the same bean variety. The reason seems to be that maturity for a
given variety may be extended during one or more of the growth periods.

    The developing bean will respond to many factors including planting in cool and/or wet soils, planting
in dry soils, insufficient soil moisture, high temperatures during flowering which delays pod set, or
low temperatures during maturation. Maturity of a variety may also be extended by preplant herbicide
injury, excess of or lack of certain plant nutrients, low plant stands, beans following alfalfa in a rotation,
or damage from hail. Some of these factors can be controlled, others cannot. It's important to consider
these factors, however, when comparing differing maturity dates for a bean variety. One of the above
factors will usually be responsible for the difference.

Dr. Duane R. Berglund
NDSU Extension Agronomist



    The recent cool temperatures have undoubtedly been a blessing considering all the late planted small
grains. However, there has been valid concern about the effect of the cool temperatures on more
developed small grain crops.

    Small grain development during early vegetative stages favors cool temperatures. Cool temperatures
encourage tillering and more extensive root development prior to entering the reproductive stage. Large
head size and higher yield potential is also encouraged by cool temperatures during early development.

    Frost damage to small grains is highly dependant on the stage of the crop, the temperature and
duration of the low temperature, and environmental conditions that existed before the frost occurred.

    Small grains are among the most frost tolerant of crops. When temperatures fall below 50o F for
several days before a frost, the crop goes through a hardening process and develops more tolerance.
Drought stress can also cause hardening. Up to jointing small grains can easily withstand temperatures
of 25o F. After jointing the growing point moves above the soil surface and is more susceptible to
frost damage.

    Small grains are most susceptible to frost from the late boot through flowering. Frost injury
occurs during boot through flowering when temperatures fall below 28o F. This is the stage when
reproductive tissue development is occurring. Anthers, the pollen producing structures are easily
damaged preventing or severely reducing pollen production. Barley is more susceptible to frost injury
during the boot stage because it flowers while still in the boot.

    Winter wheat crops are at the greatest risk for injury from frost because they are in the boot to
flowering stage. Evaluating these crops for damage must be done by dissecting flowers and looking
at the anthers. A watery appearance indicates frost injury and those anthers will not shed pollen.
If pollen shed has already occurred florets should be evaluated for kernel development which may
require several days. If the crop is in a pre-jointing stage, the growing point should be white or cream
colored. Darkening or softening with a watery appearance of the growing point indicates injury.

    Air and soil temperature information can be obtained from the North Dakota Agriculture Weather
Network at ‘www.ext.nodak.edu/weather’.

Michael D. Peel
Extension Small Grains Agronomist



    First it was the cold, wet weather with continued rain and difficulty getting into the fields to
plant and spray. Now it is the time to evaluate your corn planting. In a few fields, small corn
plants are curved and may have stunted root growth from one or a combination of factors
including: too shallowly planted (corn should be planted two to two and a half inches deep in
order to adequatelyspread the primary, nodal and eventually the brace roots on the plant so
they can better anchor the plant, even in wet years); soil crusting (above or below the corn
roots may cause either emergence or rooting problems); cool soil temperatures followed by cool
air temperatures in mid-May; or, previous herbicide injury that pruned the root system. Other
problems in corn that might lead to plants lodging or growing in a curved 'sledrunner' or 'gooseneck'
shape include: corn rootworm larvae feeding damage, nematode feeding damage from species
that are parasitic on corn roots, mechanical injury, or hot, dry weather and winds that prevent
normal brace root development.



    Corn plants that appear discolored during emergence to knee-high are sending you a signal. Look
for the symptoms to interpret the cause: leaves sandblasted, pale green to whitish--wind damage or spider
mites feeding under the leaves; lower leaf speckling, new growth undamaged--herbicide injury; general
yellowing of upper leaves--magnesium deficiency; general yellowing of lower leaves--excessive moisture;
yellowing in the whorl--herbicide injury; purpling or reddening of leaves--phosphorus deficiency, compacted
soil, cold weather (especially on certain hybrids), white grubs, dinitroaniline herbicide injury; leaves
bleached white--herbicide injury; irregular leaf mottling on base leaves--maize dwarf mosaic or chorotic
dwarf virus; light gray or silvery blotches on both sides of leaves--sunscald or frost; light streaking of
leaves--zinc deficiency; bright yellow to white stripes on scattered plants through the field--genetic
stripes; white or yellow stripes between leaf veins--excessive soil acidity, magnesium deficiency or maize
white line mosaic virus (if lines are not continuous); bleached bands across leaves--air pollution injury; and,
yellow leaves and spindly plants--nitrogen deficiency or sulfur deficiency (if more pronounced on younger leaves).



    Soil crusts this spring have created germination and rooting problems in crops. Crusts are created
by the breakdown of the soil's structure by flowing water, raindrops or through freeze-thaw action. In
the freeze-thaw action, crusts are created with the puddling effect as ice forms, melts and reforms. These
particular crusts can be 3/8- to 5/8-inch thick as compared to simple raindrop-impact crusts that are often
only 1/4-inch thick. Crusts are usually less than two inches thick, but are massive because individual soil
particles fill pore spaces on the surface and prevent water movement, air entry and seedling emergence
from occurring. Long-term problem elimination of crusting can be accomplished by maintaining plant cover
or crop residues to reduce raindrop impact; adopting management strategies that increase soil aggregate
stability; using practices that increase soil organic matter content or reduce the sodium ion concentration in
the soil; using a rotary hoe or row cultivator to shatter crusts; or, using sprinkler water to reduce restriction
of seedling emergence.



    Soybean plants that are six to eight inches tall should have their first unfolded leaflets (V2 stage).
Nodulation, the symbiotic relationship of bacteria on the soybean roots, can be seen shortly after
emergence, but the plant is not actively fixing nitrogen until the V2 to V3 stages. The number and
nodules formed on the soybean roots along with the amount of nitrogen fixed increases until the R5.5
stage. Nodules actively fixing nitrogen for the plant are pink or red inside. White, brown or green
nodules indicate that nitrogen-fixation is not occurring. Nitrogen fertilization after planting (other than
pop-up or early, limited fertilization) is not recommended as nitrogen fertilizer applied to active
nodules will render these nodules inactive or inefficient, depending on the amount of nitrogen applied.
Soil nitrogen is utilized over fixed nitrogen, if available in large amounts. Check the health of your soybean
nodules and check root proliferation. At V2, soybeans should be rooting down six inches into the soil
and by V5 will completely reach between 30-inch rows, making any cultivation at V5 needing to
be very shallow.

Denise A. McWilliams
Extension Crop Production Specialist

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