NDSU Extension - Williams County


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Fall Chores - September 23, 2016

County Agent Update

Danielle Steinhoff



Fall Harvest and Yard Chores


Fall is officially here, and the leaves are starting to change color as well. With some trees starting to turn their fall color, that also means it’s time to clean up the dropped leaves. It is always best to pick up the leaves in your yard during the fall so that next spring those leaves can’t transfer any diseases or cause fungi to grow. Leaving leaves down in the yard will create a layer that moisture from the snow can’t escape, increasing the chance of mold or fungi to grow in your yard in early spring and throughout the summer months. Along with picking up the leaves, right now is the perfect time to be fertilizing. Fall is the time for the grass roots to grow, it will take the nutrients and energy and work on creating a strong root system. Spring fertilizing helps promote lush green lawns. Along with cleaning up the yards, now is the time to be harvesting some of your fruit and vegetables. It is time to harvest pears when the skin changes to yellowish-green, the skin texture begins to feel smooth and the spots on the skin change from white to brown. Rhubarb on vigorous plants can be harvested for a treat from now to frost. The stalks will be tougher than spring-harvested stalks, but do not harvest frosted stalks, they may be toxic. Also, berry season is coming to an end. Remove raspberry canes that bore fruit this summer to ground level. This the canes that are remaining to 3-4 inches apart. If thinning isn’t done this fall, it can be done until March. This information was gathered from the NDSU Yard and Garden Report.



DON levels


Around the region, vomitoxin (DON) levels can be found in fields upwards of 15ppm. There are somethings that you can do with that grain; sell, feed or cleaning are the most common options. Vomitoxin occurs when plants are infected with Fusarium head blight (FHB) or scab. The seed heads can get infected during cool and moist weather. Remember, just because you have FHB or scab, that doesn’t mean your field will end up with vomitoxin. The chance of DON happening in your field does increase, so monitoring to see if applying a fungicide is possible which may help with DON occurring at such high rates. North Dakota State University Extension Service does have a publication out called; DON (Vomitoxin) in Wheat Basic Questions and Answers. This publication number is PP-1302, which can be helpful in understand what possibilities your farm can do with infected grain. Contact the office if you would like a copy of this NDSU publication, 701-577-4595.


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