Crop Report – June 17

Alex Yost running our 360 SOIL SCAN doing a nitrate test in the field.

This week has shifted into sidedress season at the coop, with the warm weather of last weekend and the cool down mid-week the corn has begun to add some height and growth stages. The majority of the corn in the area is beginning to regain some green color, but after taking some early season nitrate tests we are seeing that it may be short lived for some fields. This year, the fields that are showing signs of nitrogen deficiency already, which means they may have lost the majority of their nitrogen from the wet weather events. A nice cheap and easy tool for checking the nitrate levels of your fields is through our 360 SOIL SCAN, we can pull soil nitrate tests and have same day results for your fields to get an accurate gauge of what is left, and what you may still need to put down. If you are seeing other signs of deficiency in your fields, our plant tissue tests may be a beneficial tool. Talk to your agronomist or YieldPoint specialist to schedule these.  

The soybeans across the area have begun to add many new leaves and some height, the wetter fields are still stressed from the prior rains though. This stretch of dry weather is helping those areas catch up to the rest. Water hemp is beginning to poke through on some pre emerge sprayed fields this week, so keep an eye on the fields with past history of issues. Remember catching the water hemp plants young is the easiest way to rid your fields of the issues they may cause if they get big. If you are seeing dark brown spots on the soybean leaves on the bottom of the plant, this is a common disease after heavy rainfall events from splashing dirt. Septoria Leaf Spot, or Brown Spot of Soybean is the name of this disease and yield limitations are minimal as long as it stays in the lower canopy.  

The alfalfa has been progressing nicely with the timely rains and heat of this early summer and is keeping ahead of the insects for the most part. This being said, watch late cut fields and new seedings this week, as most damaging insects will flock to these fields once the early cut plants add too much height. Also watch fields that may be excessively dry or stunted. After the next cutting, we will need to intensively watch fields for leafhoppers, because the warm weather and southern winds have brought a good population of them north already.  

Written by Alex Yost, YieldPoint Program Specialist

Freeing phosphorus: New ways to add crop nutrient availability

An innovative option makes broadcast crop nutrient applications more available.

Farmers wouldn’t be satisfied with just 20 percent weed control from a herbicide application, but that’s typically the best nutrient availability they can expect from dry phosphate fertilizer applications.

“Under the best soil conditions, only one-fifth of applied phosphorus may be available to the crop throughout the season,” says Steve Carlsen, Levesol and crop enhancement manager, CHS Agronomy. “Availability is even less when soil pH levels are too high or too low or in soils that contain too little organic matter.”

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Crop Progress Report – June 1st

This being the first week of June, the majority of our trade area crops were planted in a 30-day window this year. Many growers have seen this as promising to the 2020 cropping season, planting acres that haven’t been touched for many years. Even now with the heavy rains of last week and a wet start to this week, we are seeing a lot of crops progressing in the countryside.

Crop scouting has begun here at CHS across our territory, something I rarely ever see, as some of our trade areas are usually behind or ahead of the rest. Across our territory I am seeing much of the same issues arise this year. Nutrient deficiencies in corn and soybean are starting to pop up due to the extremes in soil moisture and temperature. If your fields are showing signs of a nutrient deficiency or you suspect a deficiency is occurring, contact your agronomist to help get your fields back in check with a crop tissue test or a soil nitrate test. These cost-effective tools can help diagnose specifics in your field, to help pinpoint and capture yield limiting issues while the corn is still manageable. Using our scouting tool Agellum™ on farm can then help organize record keeping of other issues that may have been found in taking the tissue sample, and to geo-reference our sampling to attain a more realistic picture of the field.

Crop nutrient stress and pre-emerge herbicide efficacy has been the story for much of our area this spring. Starting out with the lack of moisture and then a switch to excessive moisture you should watch fields for weed escapes. You may want to get a game plan together for a second pass approach to manage these weeds before they too become yield limiting. Also, if you have some prevent plant ground from last year, watch these areas more in depth, as the general seed bank has changed in these fields with the change in cropping.

Overall, the last note is on insect presence, up until late last week the presence of insects has been minimal with the cool weather. But with the warm weather last week we are beginning to see enough heat units ramp up to provide issues in late planted corn. We should start seeing populations on the rise into second crop hay. So, keep an eye out on those fields that may have had a history of insect presence in the past and watch any early cut hay that could begin regrowth before other stands.

Written by Alex Yost, YieldPoint Program Specialist

Tough Weeds Got You Down?

As we transition from pre emerge spraying to post applied there’s a new adjuvant to consider.  CHS Inc. offers a high-efficacy adjuvant, CHS Level Best™, a surfactant and deposition aid, which works to improve herbicide performance by maximizing uniform coverage, increasing wetting and providing strength to penetrate through waxy or weather-hardened cuticles. CHS Level Best works by spreading droplets, keeping droplets wetter longer, as well as helping penetrate leaf cuticles allowing for more overall herbicide uptake. By including an adjuvant with your herbicide, you are giving it the best opportunity to be successful in eliminating tougher weeds.

CHS Level Best can be used with a wide variety of herbicides and other adjuvants. It is designed to significantly increase performance over the standard adjuvant program and is compatible with a broad range of conventional and traited crops as well as non-crop situations. Give it a try today and see the results for yourself. Contact your agronomist for more details.

Written by: Jeremy Hunt, Agronomy Sales Manager

Frosted Alfalfa?

Jared Goplen, Extension educator, Crops

The recent cold weather has caused stress for many emerged crops in Minnesota, including forages. The warm weather earlier this spring allowed many alfalfa stands to produce significant spring growth, with stands in some areas approaching one foot, or more, in height. Some alfalfa fields have experienced frost damage with the recent sub-freezing temperatures, with the greatest potential for frost injury occurring this morning (5/12)
(Figure 1).


Alfalfa is relatively tolerant of cold temperatures, especially smaller plants. Most stands should recover just fine with no more than a few frosted leaves (Figure 2).

This article includes several important points on managing frosted alfalfa stands.

Air temperature doesn’t mean alfalfa temperature

Frost injury to alfalfa can be difficult to predict, as microclimates around or within fields of alfalfa can have large influences on the actual temperature of alfalfa plants. Air temperature readings are often reported from several feet above the soil surface. Actual temperatures within the forage canopy can differ from air temperature depending on the density of the forage, wind speed, soil moisture, and soil temperature. Individual plants can also differ in freezing tolerance depending on the variety and stage of development.

Alfalfa is relatively cold tolerant

Alfalfa can generally withstand temperatures down to 24F for several hours without damaging more than the leaves in the mid- to upper-canopy. Temperatures from 25F to 30F may freeze leaves, but will likely not kill the apical meristem (bud) at the top of the plant. The meristem has added protection from the developing leaves surrounding the meristem
that provide additional insulation. When temperatures warm up, the surviving meristems should continue normal growth. Newly-seeded alfalfa has excellent cold tolerance, especially before emergence of the second trifoliate. Cold tolerance diminishes some with older seedlings, but newly seeded stands should survive as long as temperatures do not go
below 26F for more than four hours.

Patience is key to managing frosted alfalfa

Waiting several days is the first step in managing frost-damaged alfalfa. Leaf injury will likely be obvious as soon as temperatures warm up, as affected leaves will begin to wilt and change color. If stems have been damaged, they will also wilt. Stems can appear wilted but straighten up again after several days, which is why it is important to be patient in evaluating the full extent of damage. If stems straighten up again, or if stems were not affected, normal growth should resume with little to no yield penalty.

  • If only the uppermost leaves show frost symptoms, such as black or brown tissue throughout leaves or on leaf margins, the stand will continue to grow fine with minimal, if any, first cutting yield loss.
  • If the entire upper canopy turns black, brown, or necrotic, this means the meristematic tissue (bud) was killed by frost and will not continue growth. Unfrosted axillary stems will continue growing from lower on the stem and from crown buds. This growth will take slightly longer to develop, and may delay first cutting.
    • If there is enough biomass to warrant harvest (>15-20 inches tall), the frosted alfalfa could be harvested to capture frosted leaves and stems that will soon fall off.
    • If there is not enough biomass to warrant harvest (<15-20 inches tall), allow the axillary and crown buds to continue growth until the stage of normal firstcutting. Yield will likely be somewhat reduced and harvest will likely be delayed.
  • If new seedings turn brown, black, or necrotic, the plants will not regrow and will need to be reseeded. If some areas of the field survived while others died, reseed only areas that were injured or killed.

Reviewed by Krishona Martinson

Original Post Here

CHS Larsen Cooperative Announces New Agronomy Location

CHS Larsen Cooperative is excited to announce its latest acquisition of the former Pinnacle Ag/ADM facility on Stockton Road just east of Stevens Point. In addition to dry fertilizer products, the cooperative plans on marketing liquid fertilizer, crop protection products and seed to growers in the area.  

“This facility fits well into our long-range growth plan to serve the area with our full line of agronomy products,” says David Neal, general manager, CHS Larsen. 

In addition to the agronomy staples of fertilizer, crop protection products and seed, the cooperative also features a full line of precision ag products and services as well as grower input financing. In past years, CHS has only been able to offer feed, grain and energy products in the area. The addition of the Stockton facility will tie all the pieces together, allowing CHS to offer its complete line of products and services to area growers.

“As a cooperative, we are always looking for ways to help our owners grow and provide better service to them,” says Neal. “In order to do this, we’ve decided we need to expand our service area and facilities as well. By adding the Stockton facility to our existing agronomy outlets, we will be able enhance our distribution options during the fast-paced planting season when secure supply and logistics are critical to all growers. The physical location of the plant along the I-39 and Highway 10 corridor gives us excellent, efficient logistical options to both the central and northeastern Wisconsin markets that we now serve.”

The CHS Stockton facility is well situated to earn local growers’ business by offering traditional and proprietary products that will enhance yield through personalized local service which every grower expects and deserves.  

CHS Larsen Cooperative delivers agronomy, grain, energy and feed products and services to Wisconsin ag producers and other customers in 25 counties in Wisconsin and three in Upper Michigan. It is part of CHS Inc., (www.chsinc.com) a leading global agribusiness owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States. Diversified in energy, agronomy, grains and foods, CHS is committed to creating connections to empower agriculture, helping its farmer-owners, customers and other stakeholders grow their businesses through its domestic and global operations. CHS supplies energy, crop nutrients, seed, crop protection products, grain marketing services, production and agricultural services, animal nutrition products, foods and food ingredients, and risk management services. The company operates petroleum refineries and pipelines and manufactures, markets and distributes Cenex® brand refined fuels, lubricants, propane and renewable energy products.

CHS Larsen Co-op and Country Visions collaborate to offer precision planting products

CHS Larsen Cooperative and Country Visions Cooperative (CVC) have come to an agreement to join forces in offering precision planting products to their customers.  Country Visions will utilize CHS Larsen’s YieldPoint® team to support the customers of Country Visions who currently purchase precision planting products.

CHS Larsen’s Cody Miller will lead the Precision Planting team, with the support of Ryan Jones and Richard Block from CHS Larsen. Chad Rataicheck from Country Visions’ Chilton location will continue as the lead technician and salesperson for that cooperative.  In addition, Country Visions has technicians Tyler Vogeler at Plymouth and Karl Peschke in Ripon, along with Shawn Wesener in Chilton, to service planters as part of the Precision Planting team.

“With all the advancements in technology, the ability to be everything for everybody is becoming increasingly difficult.  The combination of equipment knowledge, along with technology, takes a team approach,” according to Brian Madigan, CVC Agronomy Sales Manager.  “Rather than duplicate the effort, we felt this was the best way to utilize existing employee assets.”

Parts billing will come from the customer’s business of choice, allowing current customers to continue those trusted relationships with their cooperatives. The most notable change will be the expanded team available to assist on sales calls and offer technical support.

Customers will continue to see advanced services from both the CHS facility in Larsen and its mobile trailer. This agreement will benefit customers by creating a larger footprint for precision planting in northeast Wisconsin, which will provide greater purchasing power for all customers.

“I feel the added value for patrons from both cooperatives with the precision planting product line will align with CHS values of providing services and products that will increase return on investment for patrons’ acres. We will be able to add value to each grower’s operation from CHS as well as Country Visions with this agreement,” says Cody Miller, CHS YieldPoint® Coordinator.

This agreement between CHS Larsen Cooperative and Country Visions Cooperative will support the technology investments of their customers through precision planting products. Other agronomy products and services will continue to be provided by the individual cooperatives and their ag centers. 

CHS Larsen Cooperative is part of CHS Inc., (www.chsinc.com) a leading global agribusiness owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States. Diversified in energy, agronomy, grains and foods, CHS is committed to creating connections to empower agriculture, helping its farmer-owners, customers and other stakeholders grow their businesses through its domestic and global operations. CHS supplies energy, crop nutrients, seed, crop protection products, grain marketing services, production and agricultural services, animal nutrition products, foods and food ingredients, and risk management services. The company operates petroleum refineries and pipelines and manufactures, markets and distributes Cenex® brand refined fuels, lubricants, propane and renewable energy products.

Schedule Your Seed Pick-Up

CHS Larsen Cooperative is continuing to adapt as the impact from COVID-19 evolves. As an agricultural cooperative we will continue to do what we can to support our farmer-owners. We’ve been receiving many calls asking about having access to the products they’ve ordered.

We do have our seed pick-up days scheduled for April 8 and 9; however, we are encouraging customers to call 920-982-1111 and schedule an earlier pick-up time if they are able to take seed now. When you come to the New London warehouse we are asking customers to stay in their vehicles and call the warehouse cell phone 920-538-2559 to let us know you’re in the parking lot. We will then bring your seed out to you.

If you will not be picking up your order, please call and arrange a delivery time at NO CHARGE if delivered before May 1.  Each order delivered after May 1 will be considered “In-Season” and will be charged the normal delivery charge of $60.00.

The New London warehouse is working diligently to ensure your products will be ready for plant 2020. We truly want to thank you for supporting and placing your trust in CHS Larsen Cooperative’s Agronomy Department as we navigate through this challenging time. Please watch the CHS Larsen Cooperative website for further updates.

Newest Addition to Agronomy Sales, Jacob

On December 20, we welcomed Jacob Petrie to the agronomy sales staff. Jacob graduated from UW-Platteville in 2015. He has a double major in Soil Crop Sciences and Agri business. He now resides in the Neenah area. 

Before starting with CHS Larsen he worked for two years as an agronomist at a neighboring cooperative. Then he worked for a retailer for another seed dealer in the Chilton area for 3 years. He wanted to work for CHS Larsen because he felt we are a well-organized company where he would fit into the position well. He also enjoyed working in the cooperative system and wanted to get back into it.

His ag interest developed when he was able to keep a steer at his uncles farm, to show at the county fair, and it grew from there. In his free time he enjoys the outdoors – fishing, sports and fitness. Fun fact about Jacob is he is getting married in October 2020.

He is looking forward to meeting everyone and developing relationships in the future. Feel free to reach out to Jacob with your agronomy needs.

Utilizing the Entire Package

For many growers 2019 is finally in the books and preparation for 2020 is beginning with seed orders, chemical and fertilizer prepay as well as some end of year equipment upgrading. Others still have begun these steps while finishing up the last of their acres. 2019 was a year of windows; there were only a few windows to plant, and many acres around here never even had that window. Many times, this past summer I spoke with growers and the same comments arose “it only needed 2 good days of sun.” But for some that was never given. Then the windows of application and side dress came and went, and many acres of corn didn’t get the treatments that were needed. Harvest has come and went as one of the wettest falls on record and became a difficult task for many to complete. With the year of 2019 behind us I look to the adoption of technology on the farm, whether that is in actual hardware on a planter, combine or tractor, or if it is the adoption of technology in the data and information side. Many growers still adopted technology this year or began to utilize technology that they previously adopted.  

Looking into previously adopted technology, is the entire package of the information you adopted being used on your farm? 2020 is beginning as a year that we may need to tighten our belts and maximize the margin of profit on farm. Utilizing every bit of the information collected on your farm to make sound decisions is one way to increase this margin. If you have a precision planter, or a yield monitor on your combine, or even a GPS monitor in a tractor, are you utilizing the data collected? Or are you just letting the information sit on the monitors or as maps collected? This information collected on farm from your technology has a large amount of value if utilized to complete a cropping plan for 2020 and builds a larger amount of ROI on the technology compared to the basic utilization. Yield data is an important piece of information to maximize the production of a field, by validating the areas of the field that could benefit from increased fertility or seeding rates. Utilizing these variable rate seeding rates, then can be utilized to maximize placement of in season fertilizer rates.  

On a different note, soil sampling and software on farm is one of the least utilized pieces of information that I see from farm to farm. If your farm has GPS soil samples, why not utilize the sampling for your benefit by working with one of our YieldPoint® techs to create variable rate fertility plans for your fields. The software you select to manage your data is an important step into tracking your margins and building a field history to make better decisions in the future. As margins tighten up on corn and soybeans, using the complete package of the information you collect on your farm can be the key to maximizing the profit on a per acre basis.  

Written by Alex Yost, YieldPoint® Specialist

© 2020 CHS Inc.