Mid-Atlantic Crop Management School

A farm landscape on a green background

2021 Mid-Atlantic Crop School

November 15 to December 10
Held online

About the school

This year's Mid-Atlantic Crop Management School will look a little different, but we're excited at the opportunity to offer a virtual option in 2021.

We have made some changes to the formatting in 2021 to accommodate both our attendees and invited speakers. All presentations will be pre-recorded and made available online to all paid attendees on-demand from Nov. 15 to Dec. 10.

CCA credits will be available in nutrient, crop, and pest management, as well as soil and water. There will also be nutrient and pest management credits available for several mid-Atlantic states.

Who should attend?

This school is designed for anyone interested in crop management issues, including:

  • Agronomists;

  • Crop consultants;

  • Extension educators;

  • Farmers and farm managers;

  • Pesticide dealers, distributors, and applicators;

  • Seed and agrichemical company representatives;

  • Soil conservationists; and

  • State Department of Agriculture personnel.

 

Past crop school agendas

Mid-Atlantic Crop School On-Demand Access

 


PLEASE READ ALL INSTRUCTIONS BEFORE BEGINNING
 

  • Starting a module: Select a program below. Your module will open in a new tab. Simply click to start the video. The first two slides of the module and the video will advance by themselves. The rest of the slides must be advanced by the viewer (look for a note on the slide that prompts you to click "next" or the arrow [mobile devices]). 

  • Viewing the video content within the module: The whole video must be played through in order to advance to the keywords and attendance verification.
     
    • IMPORTANT: The video slide is timed to be in sync with the length of the video. Video controls are mostly disabled; however, the video will pause if the viewer clicks on the video or if the tab containing the player is not kept active (e.g., the web browser is minimized or focus is shifted to another tab). If the video is paused for any reason, the module timer will continue to run and the slide will advance automatically when the time allotted for the video expires. We recognize that this is not ideal. Unfortunately, there is no work around. Therefore, we suggest advancing to the video only when prepared to view the entire video without pausing. We are working on an "video only" option that will allow viewers to return to the video and navigate freely; this option will not include access to the keywords or verification quizzes. We apologize for any inconvenience. 

  • Verification quiz access: Quiz links are located on the "Keyword" slide (last slide in the module) and click on the corn icon. The quiz will open in a new window.  Log in verification is tied to the primary email used to register. Not working? Please make sure to turn off any pop-up blocking programs. 

Crop Management

— Chuck Burr and Matt Stockton (University of Nebraska - Lincoln)

Testing Ag Performance Solutions (UNL-TAPS) began in 2017 as a farm management competition. Participants make six decisions including: nitrogen timing and amount, irrigation timing and amount, hybrid selection, seeding rate, crop insurance selection and grain marketing. Sixty seven percent of participants report having started adopting new tools and technologies as a result of being involved in TAPS and some have reported using 40-60 less pounds of nitrogen on their own farm with no reduction in yield. This session will look at the TAPS program and how involvement of private industry and peer to peer learning can accelerate practice adoption.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Sarah Lyons (North Carolina State University)

Dairy forage production in New York typically involves one main crop per growing season, with corn silage (Zea mays L.) and alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) being the most common crops in forage rotations on dairy farms. Double cropping with winter cereals during the corn silage years can provide many benefits, including preventing soil erosion and nutrient loss by keeping the ground covered over the winter months. One challenge with double cropping with corn silage is the potential overlap of harvesting the winter cereals with planting corn silage. Forage sorghum is a good alternative to corn silage as it has a later planting date and potentially shorter growing season. Research was conducted to determine N needs of double cropped forage sorghum and winter cereals, as well as planting and harvest management for both crops to determine best rotation management practices.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Carol Miles (Washington State University)

Soil-biodegradable plastic mulch (BDM) provides effective weed control and soil moisture conservation, and is an alternative to polyethylene mulch (PE). BDM will completely degrade in the soil within a few years of tillage-incorporation and is also cost effective when removal costs and disposal are taken into account for PE.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Dan Quinn (Purdue University)

Cereal rye cover crop use can be used as a management practice to limit soil nitrogen (N) loss, soil erosion, herbicide dependence, and improve overall soil structure and health. However, corn following a rye cover crop can result in N stress and yield loss due to spring depleted soil N and N immobilization. Therefore, research was performed to determine the optimal N fertilizer rate and N fertilizer timing in corn following a rye cover crop. This research provides insights into understanding how N fertilizer management can help limit corn stress and yield loss when following a rye cover crop.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Wade Thomason (Virginia Tech)

Both bread-type wheat and malting barley provide new, higher value market opportunities for Mid-Atlantic growers but strategies that optimize management and input decisions are needed. Recent research in Virginia and nearby states has addressed appropriate cultivars, seeding rates, fertility, and pest management for both these crops and will be summarized in this presentation. New information related to cultivar development, N management and use efficiency of soft red winter wheat has recently been developed and will similarly be summarized as part of the overall management strategy.

Video-only access Part 1 & Part 2: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


Nutrient Management

—Jarrod Miller (University of Delaware)

Besides fertilizer additions, soils have natural levels and additions of certain nutrients. They can come from the parent material (geology), legume inputs and recycling, as well as atmospheric deposits. Understanding their role and limitations help in the discussion of soil health and higher fertilizer prices.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Quirine Ketterings (Cornell University)

Nutrient management decisions can impact corn yield and quality as well as the potential for environmental loss of nitrogen and phosphorus from agricultural fields. Measuring yield is essential for better management decision. In this session, we will take a look at yield and yield variability within-fields, from field to field, and from year to year, and then address questions like: how much P starter fertilizer do we need for corn?; does timing of sidedressing impact yield?; should we manage headlands differently?; and how does manure use impact fertilizer decision.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Deanna Osmond (North Carolina State University)

The Modernizing Fertilizer Recommendations: Fertilizer Recommendation Support Tool (FRST) project, which began in 2018, is foundational to farmers and conservation efforts. By optimizing nutrient use and decreasing nutrients at the source, and thereby increasing the effectiveness of conservation practices, both farmers and taxpayers will save millions of dollars annually. Results from several project objectives (the national soil testing survey, the development of a minimum dataset for soil test correlation and calibration, and the database structure and legacy soil test data achieve), which have been under development, have been completed and will be discussed. New work on comparing and contrasting different relative yield calculations and soil test depths, as well as the development of the decision tool will be presented.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Leah Palm Forster (University of Delaware)

Poultry litter is an abundant and valuable source of nutrients and organic matter for cropland on the Delmarva Peninsula. While application of poultry litter may be limited in some regions due to high soil test phosphorus (P) concentrations, there are many soils on Delmarva with low to medium soil test P that could benefit from poultry litter application. Increasing application of poultry litter in areas of P deficit and decreasing application in areas of P surplus would provide dual benefits to the region by supporting agricultural productivity and improving water quality. However, Delmarva farmers face numerous regulatory, supply, and logistical obstacles when it comes to using poultry litter. We identify key barriers that limit the efficient distribution and use of poultry litter, and we discuss strategies to improve access to litter for beneficial cropland application.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Nathan Slaton (University of Arkansas)

The presentation will emphasize recently developed tools for making potassium management decisions for soybean production. Three points of emphasis for this presentation will include 1) selecting the soil-test-based, profit-maximizing potassium fertilizer rate, 2) in-season diagnosis of K deficiency with dynamic critical-K concentration curves, and 3) soybean response to in-season fertilizer-K application time and rate.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


Pest Management

—Anders Huseth (North Carolina State University)

Corn earworm (Helicoverpa zea) is a persistent pest of many crops along the eastern seaboard. Accurate scouting for corn earworm can be challenging, particularly in specialty crops like tomatoes, peppers and sweet corn. One knowledge gap is when and where earworm flights will be highest. Long term datasets can provide valuable insight into the variation of flights over time. In this talk, we will discuss the application of area-wide trap networks targeting earworm and how that information could inform management decisions in the future.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Ashley Kennedy (Delaware Fish and Wildlife)

Living and working in the Mid-Atlantic can put you at risk of encountering ticks and their associated pathogens, not to mention other biting arthropods such as chiggers and fleas. Through this talk, you will learn to identify the most common species that parasitize humans and how to protect yourself, your property, pets, and livestock. An overview of tick biology, seasonality, and medical/veterinary importance will be provided along with current best management practices.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—William L. Patzoldt, PhD (Blue River Technology, Inc)

Using artificial intelligence and machine learning, sprayers are being taught to recognize crops and weeds in real-time. When coupled with appropriate hardware, herbicides can be applied to weeds with a high degree of accuracy and precision. These next generation of intelligent sprayers bring several advantages to agricultural producers, such as the efficient use of chemical weed control products and the ability to more easily implement best management practices (BMPs) to combat the evolution of herbicide-resistant weeds.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Kurt Vollmer (University of Maryland)

Herbicide resistant weeds continue to be a problem in the mid-Atlantic region. Common ragweed, marestail, and Palmer amaranth plants with resistance to multiple herbicide groups are present in many fields throughout the area. In addition, cases of Italian ryegrass with multiple resistance and group 2 resistant common chickweed continue to be an issue in small grains. This session will focus on the life history of these weeds and selected management strategies for use in agronomic systems.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Kiersten A. Wise (University of Kentucky)

Agriculture websites that provide pest management information are plentiful, but only one web platform taps the power and resources of over 150 unbiased extension and research professionals across the United States and Canada. The Crop Protection Network (CPN) is an Extension-based, multi-state, and international platform that provides impartial, research-based information to farmers and agricultural personnel to help with decisions related to protecting alfalfa, corn, small grains, and soybean. The CPN website provides pest management resources in a variety of formats including webinars, web books, fact sheets, and image databases. Interactive tools available on CPN, such as the disease and insect loss estimates and disease and insect severity assessment tools, provide free, accurate resources to those in the agriculture industry. CPN is the resource you need to maximize the efficacy of your ag pest management plan.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Robert Christian (Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services)

*Only people seeking Virginia Private Pesticide Recertification need to review this module.

A 2021 - 2022 pesticide regulatory update, which is a required part of all VDACS approved pesticide applicator recertification courses. Discussion points include laws and regulations that govern the use of pesticides in Virginia. The most common violations during the past fiscal year and the consequences of not following the law and regulations. Reminders to follow pesticide label directions to properly store and dispose of pesticides and to recycle empty pesticide containers if possible. Applicator supervision requirements, recordkeeping, pesticide accident and incident reporting requirements, and pesticide registration requirements. Also, we will discuss ongoing federal and state regulatory activities that may impact you.

Video-only access : Legal & Safety This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


Soil and Water Management

— Adam Chambers USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), West National Technology Support Center

"The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) deploys voluntary working lands conservation practices on farms, ranches and private forestlands.  Farm Bill conservation practice deployment builds upon a strong sense of trust and a conservation plan, helping agricultural producers achieve their individual objectives while accomplishing the NRCS mission of ‘getting more conservation on the ground’. Many NRCS conservation practices also deliver atmospheric benefits, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and/or enhancing carbon sequestration in perennial biomass and healthy soils. Through a long-standing strategic partnership, NRCS has partnered with Colorado State University to deliver the COMET-Farm and COMET-Planner online quantification tools. The COMET tools are free and publicly available, relying on the most recent peer-reviewed literature to help calculate the climate change benefits of NRCS conservation practices when applied to farms, ranches and private forests. During this presentation we will explore the COMET tools."

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Jerry L. Hatfield (Retired USDA-ARS Plant Physiologist)

The yield gap is described as the difference between the genetic potential yield and the actual yield that producers achieve. The main cause of the yield gap is not due to improper management decisions by producers, but the interactions between the crop, soils, and the seasonal weather. Across the United States, the yield gap is primarily related to the lack of soil water at critical growth stages and in a few instances excess water. Managing the soil to improve infiltration and water storage decreases the yield gap and increases field uniformity of yield. Improving the soil pays dividends in terms of capturing the maximum amount of genetic potential.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Wesley Porter (University of Georgia)

Determining when and how much water to apply to crops to ensure both yield and water use efficiency are maximized can be a difficult decision. This decision should be based on soil type, crop, environmental conditions and other local data. There are many techniques, and tools available to producers for irrigation scheduling. The main goal of this presentation is to provide background information on different irrigation scheduling methods for corn, cotton, and peanut. These data provide producers with information that can be applied to most any crop for scheduling irrigation. As with most techniques and technologies, each farm may have specific fit for one or multiple systems, while other types of scheduling methods may work better for other farms. These decisions should be made on an individual case based on the capability and interest of the individual producer.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Alison Schulenburg (M.S. Student, Dept. of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture, University of Maryland)

"Rising sea levels, storms, and king tides, push saltwater into coastal agricultural fields. This phenomenon, known as saltwater intrusion, alters nutrient cycling and damages crop yields. Researchers and farmers alike are looking for solutions to adapt to and mitigate the effects of saltwater intrusion, and the Tully Lab at the University of Maryland has a current project to understand the survival of different crops and plant treatments under saltwater-intruded conditions and the potential for theses plants to survive and to remove excess nutrients (e.g. sodium and phosphorus) from the soil. Results from this study will help inform new management practices to increase soil health and maintain crop yields. The goal of this work is to guide local best management practices and potential easement opportunities for landowners facing saltwater intrusion."

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.


—Erin Silva (University of Wisconsin)

Tillage and cultivation are standard practices in organic vegetable production, used to manage weeds and create an optimal environment for seeding and transplanting. However, organic vegetable farmers are finding innovative ways to reduce the need for these soil-disturbing practices while still meeting their production goals. This session will describe some of the strategies Midwestern organic vegetable farmers are using to decrease their reliance on tillage and cultivation, as well as summarize some UW-Madison-led research focused on using cover crops to reduce soil disturbance in organic vegetable production systems.

Video-only access: This link is for review / reference only. You are NOT able to access the keywords or attendance verification using this link. To access keywords and attendance verification, please see the web page linked to the module title above.