Rain May Bring Major Crop Disease Outbreak


headshots_0000_Piel_RyanCrop damage reports continue to come in after another weekend of heavy rain in some areas. Ryan Peal, DuPont Pioneer agronomist in NW Indiana, says ponding is a serious problem in many fields, “A lot of these crops that are underwater are just not going to make it, especially if we get some heat.”  He added that the excessive rain we have had and that is forecast for the next two weeks is also taking a lot of nitrogen out of the soil, “This is going to be a real concern over the next few weeks.”


He also sees major disease problems coming as a result of the rains, “I think we are going to have a serious problem this year. As soybeans begin to flower, that is going to open up the plant to disease infestation.” He said some parts of the state have seen hail, and that will damage corn leaves which will also open the plant for infection. Peal strongly recommends that growers consider using a fungicide or at least have some on hand for a rescue treatment.


In some areas replanting may still be an option. Peal is suggesting mid group 3 varieties, “I think they can still give you good yields but you will have to increase your plant population rate.”


Hoosier Ag Today’s chief meteorologist Ryan Martin’s forecast has some very serious rainfall totals predicted for this week, “There are no ifs, ands or buts about it. We have rain in our forecast every day this week, Monday through early Saturday morning. The heaviest periods look to be Wednesday, and then Friday night. Rains there can be easily up to or over 1 inch. Other rains will be more minor to moderate, mostly a quarter to three quarters of an inch. But still…that is moisture, and its moisture that many are saying they could do without.” Martin says next weekend could be yet another weekend of heavy rain, “At this point, we are really concerned about Friday overnight, as models are showing a fantastic bulls-eye of 3 inches over Howard, Tipton, and Hamilton Counties, from Kokomo down through Westfield.  There is plenty of time for that precipitation outlook to change, shift, or disappear…but we are watching heavy rain potential very closely for the week.”