Friday, May 23, 2014

Act Quickly on Threshold Level Armyworms

Contact: Jill Scheidt, agronomy specialist
Headquartered at Barton County Extension Center
Tel: (417) 682-3579

LAMAR, Mo. -- Jill Scheidt, agronomy specialist with University of Missouri Extension, checked fields near Kenoma on May 21.

“Smut is showing up in wheat. It is identified by black mold covering the head and replacing the kernels. If developed in the flowering stage, it can spread to adjacent fields,” said Scheidt.

There are no fungicides available to treat smut, a seed treatment is recommended if your field has a history of smut.

“Smut is not toxic to livestock, but they may reject consumption. Heavily smutted grain may not be accepted at the grain elevator,” said Scheidt.

Scheidt has seen powdery mildew in the lower canopy of wheat. “If wheat is in the flowering stage, it is too late to apply a foliar fungicide,” said Scheidt.


Armyworms have been seen in lush growing, no-till fields near Golden City by an area crop consultant. Scheidt suggests scouting in the morning and evening by beating the wheat together and looking on the ground for armyworms.

Threshold levels are 4 armyworms per square foot or when 2% of heads are clipped. “Warrior II and Mustang Max are recommended; apply insecticides quickly when threshold levels are met, armyworms can destroy an entire field in one night,” said Scheidt.

Scheidt sees some purpling on lower leaves, leaf margins and mid-vein of 7-8 leaf corn due to cold temperatures.

“Seedling rots are showing up in replanted corn, due to freezing temperatures. As the ground freezes and thaws, moisture can freeze and thaw in the seed, causing seedling rots that result in mushy, discolored seeds and death of young plants,” said Scheidt.


The weekly field scouting report is sponsored by University of Missouri Extension and Barton County Extension. For more information on this scouting report, or to learn how to receive it a week earlier by telephone, contact the MU Extension Center in Barton County, (417) 682-3579.


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