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April 2011 Archive for Syngenta Field Report

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The Syngenta Field Report features information and experts from Syngenta sharing observations about issues growers are dealing with in the fields.

Be On the Lookout for Soybean Aphid This Season

Apr 26, 2011

Dr. Roy Boykin

Of the pests that rob your soybean yield each year, soybean aphids pose one of the greatest potential threats. In what is now a consistent problem for many soybean growers in the Midwest, soybean aphids make their presence known by significantly lowering yields and profits with impact on both soybean quality and quantity. After a few years of following a cyclical pattern of high populations one year followed by low populations the next, the insect has become more unpredictable, leaving growers guessing what to expect from season to season.

However, researchers agree that the most important factor in determining soybean aphid levels this year is the type of weather conditions during the spring and summer months.
Mike Gray, entomologist at the University of Illinois Extension, confirms, “If it’s very hot, as it was last summer across the Midwest, the soybean aphid population just will not thrive.”
Erin Hodgson, an Iowa State University Extension entomologist, agrees. “At the time when the aphid eggs hatch in the spring, their success will depend on the temperature of their environment,” says Hodgson. “It will depend on what’s happening as far as weather and moisture in the spring and summer.”
As challenging as it can be to predict what is in store each season, the importance of protecting against the damage from soybean aphids is critical. According to the American Society of Agronomy, plant injury caused by sap-feeding insects, such as soybean aphids, can cause up to a 75 percent loss in yield. The best way to manage the soybean aphid is to know more about what kind of damage it can cause, know when to scout and carefully time foliar insecticide applications if treatments are warranted. 
Soybean aphids are capable of exponential growth rates that can be rapidly detrimental to soybean yields. When left unmanaged populations can double every 2-3 days if conditions are favorable. Soybean aphid development is best between 72 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit, with the optimal temperature for reproduction and population growth estimated at 82 degrees. Keep these temperatures in mind over the coming months to help determine the probability of an aphid outbreak in your area. 

Regular scouting is still the best way to protect your yield, but once thresholds have been reached, immediate action is necessary to avoid significant economic injury. Give your fields the best protection from soybean aphids by selecting an insecticide with three industry-leading technologies that offers long residual control for higher potential yield and profit.

Dr. Roy Boykin, Senior Technical Brand Manager, Insecticides, Syngenta Crop Protection
Roy is responsible for the technical development, positioning and product life cycle management of insecticides for all business units in the NAFTA Region. Roy received his undergraduate education at the College of Charleston with majors in biology and business and received his master’s/doctorate degrees in entomology with minors in plant pathology and crop science from North Carolina State University.

Start the Season Off Right With an Early Fungicide Application

Apr 19, 2011

Eric Tedford

Getting a flu shot during the winter or taking Vitamin C to prevent a cold are pretty typical measures to take when hoping to avoid an illness. With that in mind, wouldn’t you want to take the same preventive measures to protect your developing corn plants from yield-robbing diseases?

Research has shown that applying a strobilurin fungicide containing azoxystrobin at the early vegetative growth stages can offer corn greater opportunities for success by positioning it for maximum yield through preventive disease control, better stress response and increased physiological benefits.
What makes an early fungicide application so important?
The early vegetative growth stages of the corn plant encompass the time when all leaves and ear shoots the plant will eventually produce are being formed. Near the V5 growth stage, initiation of leaves and ear shoots will be completed, which ultimately determine the plant’s potential yield. Because this stage is not only important to the growth and development of the plant but also to the final yield, it is critical to offer the developing plants the greatest opportunities for success.
During these early vegetative growth stages, corn plants are vulnerable to various environmental stresses such as drought or severe weather, which can reduce yield. However, applying a fungicide early can reduce stress from disease and improve crop response to stress while ensuring developing corn plants receive the protection they need. And like a flu shot, good coverage prior to the onset of disease will enhance disease control and will prevent the pathogen from spreading and causing infections.
What diseases are you most worried about this season?

Eric Tedford, Fungicide Technical Brand Manager for Syngenta, provides technical leadership for the development of fungicides. His experience includes fungicide research and development for field crops, development of postharvest fungicides, and global technical development of fungicides. He holds bachelors, masters, and doctorate degrees in plant pathology from the University of Massachusetts, Clemson University, and the University of California (Davis), respectively.

Enhanced soybean disease protection

Apr 11, 2011

Dr. Palle Pedersen

For years, soybean growers have reported improvements in vigor and yields with an insecticide/fungicide seed treatment combinationHowever, in areas with heavy Pythium and Phytophthora pressure, an extra dose of mefanoxam has been needed for increased disease protection. 

For 2011, a seed treatment formulation with extra disease protection will be available in one convenient product, eliminating the need for mixing that extra dose. If you are a retailer in an area with heavy disease pressure, contact your local sales representative for more information on this convenient, enhanced formulation.

Palle Pedersen, Ph.D., Technical Manager, Syngenta Seedcare
Dr. Palle Pedersen, Syngenta Seedcare technical manager, is responsible for technical seed treatment development for corn, soybeans, sorghum, sunflowers and canola. Previously, Palle spent seven years as an associate professor at Iowa State University where he coordinated and provided state leadership in soybean production and management, splitting his time between extension work and research. Palle received his undergraduate degree and master’s degree in agricultural science from the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University in Denmark, his master’s in agricultural economics from Wye College, England, and his doctorate in agronomy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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