Plan to scout emerged corn until it reaches V5 to assess damage and evaluate whether you need to take action against this troublesome pest.
Fields that are poorly drained, weedy or planted with minimum tillage practices are at risk to damage from black cutworms, according to Adam Sisson, pest management program assistant at Iowa State University. Late-planted corn is also at risk, notes Missy Bauer, Farm Journal associate field agronomist.
If any one of these scenarios is at play in your fields this spring, consider scouting emerged corn weekly for black cutworm damage until the crop reaches the V5 growth stage. Check corn plants in four or five areas with each field, Sisson advises.
Problem signs are plant wilting, leaf discoloration and damage as well as missing and cut plants. In the following video, Bauer addresses her concerns with black cutworm damage this season.