Blogging by the Bushel
With numerous challenges over the past several years for producers, we at Mercer Landmark understand the need for a comprehensive risk management solution. We seek to provide our customers with unparalleled service to ensure maximum results.

Archive for June, 2016

~By: Alex Fullenkamp

I have seen more weeds break through  pre-emerge applied herbicides on both corn and soybeans this year than I ever have.  I would encourage everyone to be looking at fields.  Just because one field is clean and another field was treated the same does not mean it will be clean.

We have many options that are safe in corn, even if it is non GMO corn.  I’ve personally dealt with a lot of Yellow Nutsedge, Rag weed, Velvet Leaf, and grass in corn.  Yellow Nutsedge strongly resembles grass.  It will have a waxy, yellow tint to it.   Also, the stem will be triangular.  This is a completely different family of weeds than grass and takes a completely different chemical family to kill it.

In beans I have dealt with a huge amount of rag weed, lambsquarter, curly dock, pig weed, waterhemp, and the list goes on.  DO NOT count on a high rate of glyphosate to kill this stuff.  I received a call last week about a field where glyphosate did not kill 4 -6 inch tall pig weed.  Again, we have many options to make sure we kill this stuff and will tank mix great with glyphosate and nutritional products.  Lastly, always make sure you get the right adjuvant package with the mixture. Contact your local Mercer Landmark agronomist for help with scouting and more information.

By: Brian Mitchem


With wheat harvest early this year many farmers will consider adding beans into the stubble after harvest. Assuming adequate soil moisture for germination beans planted by early July can be a productive addition to a farm. Please be careful to follow herbicide labels with respect to planting dates for beans following wheat. Planting delay for common wheat herbicides to soybeans:

  1. Harmony® Extra – 7 days
  2. Huskie ® – 4 months
  3. WideMatch® – 10.5 months
  4. 2,4-D ester – 7 days


Early nodulation in soy helps start the N production process for the plant. Beans should have functioning nodules by the V3 growth stage. It is always nice to see the bean field turn from a drab green to the dark green when the N production ramps up. The nodule is a modified root hair on the bean that has been infected by rhizobia bacteria.

Weed control issues abound in the Mercer trade area. We are seeing an increase in difficult to control weeds such as Waterhemp, Common and Giant Rags. Many of these weeds are showing the evolution of herbicide resistance to one or more classes of chemistry.

At left is a bean field with a significant level of Waterhemp present. This presents a challenge as this weed has very limited options for control in soybeans. Our focus should remain to have adequate rates of herbicides applied pre to the crop where we have greater choices for control.

Please be sure to consult with your Mercer Agronomy team for any questions about weed ID and control options.


Most of the corn in the area is going through the very rapid growth phase that will take the crop to reproductive stage.

Corn root systems are rapidly developing as well. Depending on soil type an individual corn plants root system will encompass an area between 25 and 40 square feet. Leaves have changed their juvenile drab green color to the attractive shiny green adult color. This change is a result of the different types of wax deposited on the leaves. By V8 this process is complete.

Kernel row numbers start forming around V6/V7 and is completed by V10 to V12. New leaves are emerging every 3 days when the plant receives about 70-80 heat units through V10. Leaves emerge every 2 days after V10 when the plant receives 50 heat units up through tassel. At tassel no new leaves or roots develop as all energies are turned over to reproduction.

Kernels per row are determined from V12 forward and is influenced by environmental stresses. Corn uses at least .25” of water from the soil per day.

Corn should be monitored for nutrient needs and disease tolerance closely through early reproductive stages for maximum performance.

~By: Ben Stoller

Cutworm in Paulding County, OH field, June 1, 2016

Now is a great time to be scouting corn fields for black and dingy cutworms.  Damage is most likely to occur in corn fields in the VE-V4 stages.

Fields most at risk include those with the following situations:

  1. Poorly drained or in low-lying areas
  2. Late planted corn or corn planted after soybean
  3. Fields with weed pressure
  4. Late or reduced tillage

Detailed scouting and threshold information can be found at this Monsanto agKnowledge newsletter

Iowa State University has developed a threshold to determine if action is economically feasible.  A downloadable spreadsheet can be obtained here.

Please contact your Mercer Landmark agronomy representative for assistance in selecting insecticides capable of treating these pests.