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4. IPM Strategies and Research

July 20, 2020

Welcome to the middle of the cropping season in Michigan.  Scouting is an essential practice for crops as they enter their more mature stages.  Some of the watch outs would include nutrient deficiencies, pest damage, and weed pressure.    Based on soil conditions and weather patterns, you will see a variety of scenarios unfold.  As the crop weakens due to the environmental stress, you can see an increase in pest infestation, weed pressure and plant stress that could also be a result of nutrient deficiencies.

Plant nutrient deficiencies can influence your yield early if not corrected in a timely manner.  Primary, secondary, and micronutrients all play different roles in plant development.  Recognizing the symptoms early will be key and beneficial as you set up your crop for the expected yield. 

Pests like armyworm, Japanese beetles, aphids, mites, weevils, leafhoppers, & rootworm are a few of the most common worries of any grower.  It is important to know and understand your economic threshold to better plan your IPM strategy to control potential yield damaging injury.  

Weed prevention is paramount in a good crop stand.  Not only common easy to treat weeds but also managing the chemical resistant weeds like marestail and water hemp.  Keeping up on the latest herbicide chemistries can be a challenge, but the continued efforts of our industry partners to develop new opportunities to manage weed resistance through research is much welcomed.

With all that challenges a grower throughout the year, making the best choices on your IPM strategies is essential to a successful crop.  With the development of new hybrids and chemistries, industry is abundant with companies researching new and innovative ways to improve stands and yield. 

At the North Central Research Station, we implement and research different strategies to combat the challenges.  Researching a variety of management practices that include but are not limited to cover crops, nutrient trials, new chemistry applications, as well as soil management techniques. 

How can we best fit the needs of industry to develop practical solutions for the grower?  We are in currently planning of our research plots for the 2020-2021 cropping season.  Take a moment to visit our website at www.northcentralresearch.com or feel free to set up a tour of our facility. 

(Jay Eccleton, CGCS.  Site Manger – North Central Research Station)