The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Neighborhoods Farm

June 29, 2014

An update from the fields in our beautiful county

Hello, Ashtabula County! Wow did we get pounded this past week with rain. The heavy rains from Monday through Wednesday really bought everything in the fields to a screeching halt.

We need a nice stretch of weather for hay to be made as we are already 3 weeks behind.

Farmers will also be turning their attention to combating the weeds, diseases and insects which can damage their crops.

Today, I would like to update you on a few items from the fields in our beautiful county.

This past Sunday, I placed out Western Bean Cutworm traps across the county. This will be the fourth year in which we are part of a state-wide monitoring program for the Western Bean Cutworm.

This corn pest just recently has become a concern in northeast Ohio so its biology and economic impact are something we are just learning about.

The western bean cutworm has been historically found in the western Corn Belt, where it was a common pest of dry beans and a sporadic pest of corn.

Starting in the year 2000, economic damage from this pest was found on corn in Iowa and Minnesota. Since then, this pest has continued to rapidly spread eastward, reaching Ohio in 2006.

The easiest way to monitor the presence of this pest is trapping of the adult moths.

During early July through early August, the adult moths will lay eggs on the upper leaves of the corn plants, and once the eggs hatch, larvae begin feeding on the tassels, silks or ears of the corn. Depen-ding on the crop’s growth stage, yield losses can be significant.

In our monitoring for western bean cutworm adults, four traps were placed in various locations across Ashtabula County.

Thank you to Howard Seavey, Joel Baldwin, Robert Marrison, and Tony Stocker for allowing me to place traps on their property for this research.

These traps will be checked weekly during our summer growing season.

Last year we found 178 moths in the four Ashtabula County traps. These numbers were significantly lower when compared to 2012 so it will be interesting to see the results this year.

More information about the Western Bean Cutworm can be found at: http://ohioline.osu.-edu/ent-fact/pdf/0040.pdf.

This factsheet can also be obtained by calling the Ashtabula County Ex10sion office at 440-576-9008.

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