Crop & Pest Report


Crop & Pest Report - All

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Southwest ND (08/02/18)

Information from the Southwest region of North Dakota.

In the month of July, NDAWN observed 2.72 inches of rain in Hettinger, 1.2 inch in Bowman, 3.97 inches in Carson, and 0.89 inch in Mott. According to NDAWN Dickinson has received 2.87 inches of rainfall from July 1st to July 31st, however over half of that fell in the first 2 weeks of the month. Some parts of the region could use moisture with some cornfields in the area looking drought stressed. Many small grain fields are approaching maturity. Some sunflowers in the area are beginning to flower.

Ryan Buetow

Extension Cropping Systems Specialist

NDSU Dickinson Research Extension Center

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South-Central ND (08/02/18)

Information from the South Central region of North Dakota.

The region’s NDAWN station data indicate the following rainfall amounts:

*April 1 to July 30 - 5.4 inches (Harvey) to 14.6 inches (Streeter), and 8.6 inches at the Carrington REC (CREC).

* July 1 to 30 - 0.9 inch (Harvey) to 7.7 inches (Oakes), and 2.7 inches at the CREC.

Our current dry period is good for early season crop harvest and haying but not to maintain yield potential in row crops. NDAWN data indicates corn emerged on May 15 and soybean emerged May 20 used 0.2- to 0.24-inch of water per day during July 24-30. Row crops are showing soil moisture stress generally in Sheridan and Wells counties, and in field areas with poorer soils throughout the region.

Harvest continues with winter cereals, field pea and barley, and has begun with spring wheat. Early planted corn is in the blister to milk stages (R2-3). Based on NDAWN growing degree day units (GDDU) accumulated from May 1 planting date through July 30, the region’s corn has accumulated 1435 GDDUs (Wishek) to 1650 GDDUs (Lisbon and Oakes), which continues to be well ahead of the long-term average for the same period. Soybean and dry bean are in seed development stages, and sunflower are shining with yellow during pollination.

Upcoming CREC crop tours:                             

*Barnes County off-station - corn and soybean (Fingal area): August 8; 8 a.m.

*Row Crop - corn, dry bean and soybean (CREC): August 23; 4 p.m.



Greg Endres

Extension Cropping Systems Specialist

NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center

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Northeast ND (08/02/18)

Information from the Northeast region of North Dakota.

The need for a good rain shower has developed over the past week. Pinto beans and soybeans are showing moisture distress in scattered areas across the northeast. Barley harvest has started.

For insect concerns, soybean aphids are isolated and in small numbers when found. Banded sunflower moth levels are still high in pheromone traps. This pest can be a concern for late-seeded sunflowers, which have just started to bloom in the region. Grasshoppers are noticeable, but be aware of IPM thresholds of 8 to 14 adults per sq. yard in a field or 21 to 40 adults per sq. yard in the field margin. Following IPM thresholds will save time and money especially when there isn’t a lot of working room in projected crop profits.

No new concerns have developed in the disease realm. Dicamba injury to soybeans have been observed in low amounts in the northeast region. Granted, there is less acreage using this technology here than in southeast ND.


Lesley Lubenow

Area Extension Specialist/Agronomy

NDSU Langdon Research Extension Center

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Northwest ND (08/02/18)

Information from the Northwest region of North Dakota.

Crops are starting to turn color in Northwest ND. Most farmers I’ve spoken with say they are about 1 to 2 weeks away from starting wheat harvest. At the Williston REC, winter wheat harvest started last week and pea trials are getting harvested now. Our production pea and lentil fields will likely get desiccated later this week and harvested next week. Production wheat fields will get harvested in the next 1 to 2 weeks.

I attended the Loyal to the Soil Field Day held in Minton, SK by farmers Derek and Tannis Axten last Monday. About 100 people attended and many young farmers were there, with many from ND! The interest in intercropping was high and we saw fields with chickpea + flax, barley + fababean, durum + fababean, and pea + canola. For ascochyta management in chickpea + flax, Derek has one field that only received one fungicide application and another where he has not applied any fungicide but has sprayed compost tea as a foliar application twice. I’m looking forward to following-up with him after harvest and hear how his chickpeas did.



Clair Keene

Extension Cropping Systems Specialist

NDSU Williston Research Extension Center

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North Central ND (08/02/18)

Information from the North Central region of North Dakota

Pulse growers continue to monitor for pea aphid and chickpea growers continue to monitor for Ascochyta in the area. Some desiccation is being considered in the North Central area in Pulses as harvest nears. Small grain (winter wheat) harvest began on a small scale this past week.

The Minot NDAWN station will be replaced during the next week or so. Until that time, I would refer disease forecast models to the next closest NDAWN station.

As we look into the month of August – the Good Bugs Workshop will be offered once again. In this full-day short course, participants will learn about supporting beneficial insects that provide pest control. Conservation biological control is a science-based pest management strategy that seeks to encourage beneficial insects back into cropping systems for natural pest control, ultimately rewarding farmers with economically-viable pest management systems. Participants will learn how common farm practices can impact beneficial insects and how to assess and create farm habitat for beneficial insects.

One session will be offered in Larimore, ND, at the Larimore Dam Rec Area and Campground on August 15th. The second will be hosted at the NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center on August 16th. For registration or questions on the event, please contact TJ Prochaska at or connect with him at the NCREC by calling 701.857.7682. Registrations received by August 1st will receive the early bird pricing of $25. All registrations accepted after August 1st will $40. These workshops are approved for 6 CEUs in Pest Management (NDCCA).


TJ Prochaska

Extension Cropping Systems Specialist

NDSU North Central Research Extension Center

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Soil Sampling Season Begins for 2019 Crop Year (08/02/18)

With the beginning of winter wheat, rye and some spring wheat harvest, it is time to consider soil sampling for the 2019 crop year.

Soil Sampling Season Begins for 2019 Crop Year

With the beginning of winter wheat, rye and some spring wheat harvest, it is time to consider soil sampling for the 2019 crop year. The following are important to consider:

1. Sampling time

For soil nitrate, there is no perfect, stable time. Some years past, I investigated the effect of sampling time on soil nitrate values from August through April and found that at some sites, values decreased, some stayed the same, and some increased. There was no relationship between trend and rainfall. Any time is as good as any other time. Some of you have noticed that NDSU Nitrogen (N) recommendations carry a ‘plus or minus 30 lb/acre rate’ to final recommendations. This is part of it. However, it is very important to have a soil test number on which to base an N rate. If you do not have a number from a specific field (each field has a personality of soil fertility), then what you have is a not-so-educated guess.

Also, for Phosphorus (P), soil pH, Electrical Conductivity (EC - salt index), Calcium Carbonate Equivalent (CCE), Organic Matter (OM), zinc and chloride, anytime is a good time. I would sample for P and soil pH (and K) in an unworked field whenever possible, so the 0-6 inch sample core is consistent. Achieving consistent core depth with a worked field is very difficult, and in some cases, impossible.

Soil test Potassium (K) values vary through the season. Work conducted in Illinois, and now work conducted here shows that highest K values are in early spring. As the season progresses, K values decrease, achieving their lowest values in August through mid-September, then increase until freeze-up. Sampling anytime is OK, but note when K sampling was last conducted, and then sample the same time of year for K next time. Sampling time for K is important. The soil test K values vary slowly with K fertilization, so probably every two years is good enough, although I would not argue with anyone wanting to sample every year.

2. What crops should have nitrate sampling?

Traditionally, all crops that are N yield dependent (small grains, corn, beets, potato, sunflower, canola, flax) require a soil test for nitrate-N. However, based on the high residual nitrate values before soybean last fall, I would also consider a nitrate soil test before soybean in the eastern 50 miles of the state in Iron Deficiency Chlorosis (IDC) country. High soil nitrate (greater than 50 lb N per acre) can increase the severity of IDC to soybean and a grower needs to know if it is present.

3. How to sample

The days of a composite soil test should be over. There is enough equipment around owned by farmers or their suppliers that knowing how a field varies in fertility from boundary to boundary is manageable and economically advantageous. Zone sampling should be the rule in this state. The only part of a field where a grid of more than 1 sample per acre should be used is the area where high rates of manure have been applied within the past 20 years. A 2.5 acre grid is not a substitute for a good zone sampling and a 2.5 acre grid will not identify the fertility patterns within most fields. It works in Iowa because all of their variability has the same fertilizer recommendation; it’s all in the high range. In this state, variability is much larger and the variability is in soil test ranges requiring different rates.

4. Sampling in low pH soils

As addressed in an earlier 2018 Crop and Pest Report, the number of acres in North Dakota with soil pH values near or below 5 continues to increase, particularly in no-till fields that have had N applied to or near the surface for many years. When sampling these fields, it is important to sample the 0-2 inch depth, and the 2-6 inch depth for pH. Application of liming materials, such as beet lime will go onto the soil surface, and knowledge of pH with depth will not only provide information on whether a surface application will be effective, but the farmer can track pH progress after lime application.

5. Trends of Organic Matter Following Movement to No-Till

I smile when I read that a farmer increased organic matter a full point one or two years after transition to no-till. This is not possible. What happened is that whoever is taking the soil sample pushes the soil probe through the no-till residue, which is not really organic matter, and the residue becomes part of the soil sample result. Growers transitioning to no-till must insist that their soil sampling people get out of the truck, kick the residue aside and then sample the cleared area with a 0-6 inch core. That will provide a real trend in real organic matter.

Dave Franzen

Extension Soil Specialist

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Goss’ Wilt Update in the State (08/02/18)

Goss’ Wilt Update in the State

Reports of the bacterial disease Goss’ leaf blight and wilt have been received over the past couple weeks. The corn disease survey in 2017 identified Goss’ wilt in over 30% of the fields and it is likely that the disease may be common again this year, especially in areas of the state that received severe weather (i.e.: rain, wind, hail, etc). Although there is very little that can be done during the growing season, it is important to properly identify Goss’ wilt and avoid unnecessary fungicide applications. This article will review the key diagnostic features of the disease, risk factors and management options.

Symptoms and Signs

One of the first symptoms noticed in a field is leaf tip burning. This symptom can also be caused by drought stress, wind damage or nutrient stress (Figure 1). Close examination of the leaf is needed for field diagnosis of this disease. Goss’ leaf blight lesions will be water-soaked (greasy), irregular and have freckles within the lesion (Figure 2). Lesions will also exude bacterial ooze given lesions are shiny appearance. The disease is often noticed in pockets or on a field edge bordering a previous corn crop (Figure 3) or that held infected corn residue from last year’s corn harvest.





Risk Factors

Factors that increase risk for Goss’ wilt include growing a susceptible hybrid, having a short rotation away from corn (bacterium survives 10-12 months), reduced tillage, irrigation, and events that injure corn plants. Often times, Goss’ leaf blight is noticed after corn leaves are injured from hail, strong winds, or sand blasting as it provides an entrance for the bacterium. The injury in combination with warm and humid weather will favor disease development.


The best management tools for this disease include the use of resistant hybrids, crop rotation, and tillage (where appropriate). Often times I receive questions on the efficacy of hydrogen peroxide, copper-based products or citric acid on Goss’ wilt. Although I have not tested these products in North Dakota on Goss’ wilt, research conducted in Nebraska, Indiana and Illinois suggest that these products are not a viable management option.


Andrew Friskop

Extension Plant Pathology, Cereal Crops

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Soybean Progress (08/02/18)

The soybean crop has developed rapidly during the summer of 2018.

Soybean Progress

The soybean crop has developed rapidly during the summer of 2018. If a 0.9 maturity group soybean was planted on May 20 near Fargo, the accumulated growing degree-days (GGD) on July 30 were 1481 GDD compared with the 1274 normal accumulated GDD for the same date. At this time, there are about 16 percent more accumulated heat units compared to the long-term average. Heat units push the soybean plant towards maturity. The soybean maturity application called ‘soybean growing degree days’ at the North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network ( predicts a 0.9 maturity variety, mentioned above, to be physiological mature on August 26. Physiological mature means that 95% of the soybean pods will have the mature color. It will take 10 to 14 days to further dry down the grain before it can be harvested. The predicted date of physiological maturity will change slightly depending on the temperatures from today until maturity. If we will have below average temperatures, the maturity will be delayed by a few days. To get a prediction graph within the growing degree model, one needs to select the maturity group of the soybean planted, seeding date, and nearest weather station. The soybean growing degree model also indicates the normal first frost date for the selected weather station.




Hans Kandel

Extension Agronomist Broadleaf Crops

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Weather Forecast (07/26/18)

The July 26 through August 1, 2018 Weather Summary and Outlook

The past seven days was the first week with widespread below average temperatures being recorded at North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network (NDAWN) stations, in over two months (Figure 1). There will be a warm up for a few days next week, but the cool air expected through the weekend will probably be enough to keep the temperatures at or below average for this forecast period.


All NDAWN station recorded at least some rain during the past seven days (Figure 2). The heaviest rain occurred in southeastern North Dakota into west central Minnesota, rain that was associated with a slow moving upper-level low pressure system last Thursday.


The cooler weather in place this week will last through the weekend. Precipitation looks to be widely scattered during this forecast period with Friday night into Saturday looking to be the time frame with the most widespread precipitation. The odds are that many locations will record little or no precipitation through the middle of next week. The main change in this period will be the trend toward much warmer temperatures next week, especially Tuesday and Wednesday. It will feel like summer for a few days, but beyond that, another period of cooler weather is expected as we move into August. My projected growing degree days (GDDS) base 32°, 44° and 50° for the period of July 26 through August 1 is presented in Figure 3.


The projected number of hours with relative humidity (RH) at five feet above the surface is presented in Figure 4. There will be more hours with high RH today through the weekend then there will be next week, but with the increase in temperatures expected after the weekend, the risk of disease would be higher after the weekend than before.


Using May 5 as a planting date, the accumulated wheat growing degree days (Based 32°) through July 24, 2018 is presented in Figure 5. You can find your exact GDDs for your planting date(s) at:


Using May 10 as a planting date, the corn accumulated growing degree days (Base 50°) through July 24, 2018 is presented in Figure 6. You can find your exact GDDs for your planting date(s) at:



Daryl Ritchison


Interim Director of the North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network

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Southwest ND (07/26/18)

Information from the Southwest region of North Dakota.

According to NDAWN, Dickinson has received 0.69 inch of rainfall from July 16th to July 23rd with most of that falling on July 21st with 0.68 inch. Over the same period, 0.88 inch was observed in Hettinger and 0.15 inch in Mott. Winter wheat fields are beginning to be harvested and in some areas barley and other spring seeded small grains are turning color. In the past week, fields of yellow and blue spotted the landscape in parts of the region with canola and flax finishing flowering. Hay continues to be cut and baled. Hay crop in the region is looking good this year.

Ryan Buetow

Extension Cropping Systems Specialist

NDSU Dickinson Research Extension Center

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This site is supported in part by the Crop Protection and Pest Management Program [grant no. 2017-70006-27144/accession 1013592] from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed are those of the website author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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