NDSU Crop and Pest Report


ISSUE 1  May 1, 2003


North-Central ND

Canola: Flea beetles are out in low numbers and should be expected to increase as weather warms up in the next several weeks. The striped flea beetle emerges earlier than the crucifer flea beetle. It was trapped April 11th and the first crucifer flea beetle was trapped about April 21th. Feeding activity has been reported on volunteer and dormant canola.

Canola: Diamondback moths are also being detected in Minot and Fargo (J. Fauske) already. It appears that these moth may have overwinter in ND this year. Moths appear to be in perfect condition and not tattered from a long migration from southern states. Also, other migratory moths which usually arrive with the diamondback moth are not here yet, which further supports their overwintering in ND.

Cutworms: There is concern about cutworms and their potential for crop damage. Reports of cutworm problems mainly in row crops like sunflower are already starting to come in from SE Montana. Remember, to scout your fields vigilantly in the early stages of crop development and get a good plant stand established!

Janet J. Knodel
Area Extension Specialist Crop Protection
North Central Research and Extension Center


North-Central ND

An early spring for the north central and northwest region of the state; the earliest spring in fact since 1992. Soil temperatures are averaging in the lower 50's. Planting of peas, canola, barley and wheat is proceeding at a moderate pace (for April) without the feeling of being rushed. Last year between April 27 and May 8, the north central region received over 20 inches of snow resulting in the start of spring planting to be delayed until mid-May. An early start is welcome for it should spread out planting; which in turn should help this fall at harvest.

Most of the region has missed out in any measurable precipitation the last two weeks of April. Top soil moisture is adequate, however, precipitation is welcome at any time. Top soil moisture will become short across the region if precipitation doesn't fall in the next two weeks. Pastures, alfalfa, and tame hayland are still waiting for the first spring rain.

Kent McKay
Area Extension Agronomist
North Central Research/Extension Center


Southwestern ND

Precipitation over the past two weeks (April 16-29) at North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network (NDAWN) stations west of the Missouri River have ranged from 0.31 inches at Hazen to 0.82 inches at Mandan, and 0.85 inches at Hettinger. Here at Dickinson we received 0.41 inches. The lowest temperature reported at an NDAWN site in southwest North Dakota was at Hazen at 24oF on April 28. Since November 1, 2002, Dickinson has received 4.69 inches of precipitation which is 118% of normal. If the 105 year mean precipitation pattern holds true, May, June, and July will be our wettest months bringing a little over half of the expected annual precipitation or about 8.11 inches. Areas east of Dickinson and south of I-94 have not faired as well in terms of moisture.

Winter wheat emerged from dormancy in excellent condition except for exposed areas such as the top of hills. Stands are a little thin in these areas compared to the rest of the field. Wild buckwheat and field pennycress have emerged and will need to be controlled soon.

Spring seed crops have been seeded in parts of southwest North Dakota during the past three weeks. Canola is emerging with slight flea beetle damage occurring on canola that received an insecticide seed treatment and heavy damage that is untreated. Freeze injury was reported as being slight at Hettinger. Wheat and barley that was seeded a week and a half to two weeks ago has emerged.

The malt barley variety trial and malt barley fertility management trials were planted April 28 on the Bill Flaget farm near Halliday and on the Francis and Darwyn Mayer farm near Mott. These plots are part of the Western Malt Barley Initiative.

Some producers have completed seeding wheat, barley, and durum while others are just beginning. Corn planting is expected to begin later this week while sunflower planting is not expected to begin for another two weeks.

Alfalfa is four to six inches in height. No freeze damage has been reported on alfalfa.

Roger O. Ashley
Area Extension Specialist/Cropping Systems
Dickinson Research Extension Center


South-Central ND

Soil moisture conditions are generally OK, with the exception of Burleigh, Emmons, Kidder, and Logan counties. An inch of rain would be welcome across south-central North Dakota. In counties south of I94 and east of Hwy 281, wheat and barley planting is essentially complete. West to the Missouri River and north of I94, small grain planting ranges from 25 to at least 50% complete. Corn planting is in progress, with 30 to 60% of the crop in the ground in LaMoure, Dickey, Ransom, and Sargent counties. Soybean planting will start in southern counties the first week of May. Reports across the region indicate winter survival of alfalfa is good and winter wheat is satisfactory. Quackgrass, wild oat, foxtail, kochia, wild buckwheat, pigweed, volunteer small grain and sunflower are readily found. Although pasture growth is slow, cattle are being turned out. Drought-affected counties are applying for the opportunity to graze CRP land.

Greg Endres
Area Extension Specialist/Cropping Systems  
NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center  


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