|'Wheat Day' held to educate growers on various topics|
|Written by BILL RYAN Sentinel Farm Editor|
|Wednesday, 26 June 2013 09:04|
HOYTVILLE - Bread, cereals and countless other consumer foods and goods begin in the wheat fields throughout Wood County.
On Thursday dozens of area growers attended the "Wheat Field Day" held at the Northwest Agricultural Research Center on Range Line Road near Hoytville.
Among the topics was "Rain, Fungicide, Scab and Vomitoxin" by Pierce Paul, of the Department of Plant Pathology of the Ohio Agricultural Research & Development Center.
Pierce educated those in attendance about how the timing of fungicide application effects the control provided.
Pierce said the best time for application is at flowering; however studies have shown "you can still get good scab control two days, four days or even six days after flowering."
He explained there is sometimes need to apply later because it is worthless to apply during rainy times as the fungicide well just be washed away and/or diluted.
He also made sure the growers were aware that even under the best circumstances, there will only be 60 percent efficacy.
"Even when you apply fungicide you are still going to have scab and vormitoxin," Pierce said.
He noted the importance to remember you are only going to minimize the problems.
One of the other sessions was called "The Good and the Bad Insects in Wheat," presented by Ronald Hammond, entomologist with OSU Extension.
Hammond talked to those in attendance about various insects which can attack the wheat in their fields. In speaking about the cereal leaf beetle he stressed that in scouring the fields, it is most important to check the flag leaf.
"The flag leaf is the most important leaf on the plant," Hammond said.
For those not familiar, the flag leaf would be the first leaf below the head of the plant where the actual wheat can be found.
A serious infestation would take on an orange glow to the wheat field; however the feces of the beetles end up sticking to the insects and they quickly turn brown.
He said this pest was a very challenging problem 30 years ago and has now resurfaced. One of its characteristics is to seriously defoliate the leaves.
The beetle can seriously defoliate a field.
He explained one of the reasons why the beetle has resurfaced is that the parastoids designed to keep it under control are not as effective as they once were.
Hammond said that might be traced to "global warming" as the parastoids mating is not aligning with the beetles cycles and thus are not as effective at controlling the beetle.
"Everything has to mesh together for the parastoids to be effective.
When checking the fields, even one beetle per flag leaf is sufficient to warrant treatment.
Hammond also spoke briefly about the Army worms. His best advice is if these pests arrive late enough in the growth, they won't seriously harm the yield.
"What at first may look like they are feeding on the heads, they are actually going up to the heads to die," Hammond said.
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