Monthly Archives: December 2014


MarkManley-Forage 024



This is a stand of improved slash pines planted in 1995 and were 4th row thinned about three years ago. Last week, I made a blog post about Japanese Fern and Chinese Privet. Here is a native shrub found in the Coastal Plain region – Inkberry (Illex glabara). UGA Extension Forestry Weed Specialist Dr. David Moorhead says that burning will keep it small in stature but it is adapted to fire. A herbicide treatment using tricolpyr would be helpful. This would also will be fine without harming grasses. For more information on forest weed control, visit the Center For Invasive Species website.



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Sod Based Rotation

Seminole Crop E News

With the lower commodity prices and higher cattle prices, we have thought again about the sod based rotation idea that has been explored by David Wright in Florida and others.

Here’s an excerpt from the UGA Bahiagrass publication.

“Improvements in nearly all facets of crop production have been reported when row crops are grown after bahiagrass compared to following other row crops . This includes the most important factors to producers—yield and crop quality. Yet, there are other proven improvements that result from such rotations.

In terms of soil environment, which greatly contributes to the sustainability of agricultural systems, factors such as reduced erosion, build-up of soil organic matter, root growth and depth of penetration by the succeeding crop, water infiltration, earthworm population, and soil tilth all change for the better.

From a row crop standpoint, the most important benefit is usually from reduced incidence of numerous pests. Research…

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2015 GA Peanut Farm Show

GA PeanutFarmShowThis year’s Georgia Peanut Farm show is scheduled for January 15th, 2015 at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center. Visit the Georgia Peanut Commission website for more information. Below is a tentative schedule of events:

GA PeanutFarmShow-2

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Wheat Coming Up – Growth Stage & Herbicide Applications

Wheat-Spike 001

Wheat-Seedling 006Wheat is now coming up and is in the seedling stage. The Feekes scale of growth stages is one of the most common scales. In the 1.0 seedling emergence stage, the number of leaves present on the first shoot can be designated with a decimal. So, this would be stage 1.1 – a shingle shoot with one unfolded leaf. The most significant factor in developing a good yield is stand establishment. This field was broadcasted at 120 lbs/seed acre. When broadcasting, UGA Extension Grain Agronomist Dr. Dewey Lee advisese that we aim for 40-45 seeds per square foot. Our overall gaol is 30-35 plants per square foot. Right now, wheat planted behind cotton and peanuts looks to have anywhere from 20 to 35 plants per square foot. Some plants are still coming up however.

Because of late planting date, we can go a little longer before we have to put out post-emergent herbicides. Generally, this is done around Christmas. Also, we will need to start scouting for aphids and Hessian flies in a couple more weeks. Harmony is safe on early growth stage, but we want tillers before using 2,4-D. Terrell County Ag Agent Nick McGhee posted good information on Making Wheat Herbicide Applications which includes Dr. Culpepper’s recomendaditon print out.

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Forestry Program Summary

We had a very successful landowner program earlier this week. Thanks to Myrtlewood Plantation for letting us use the clubhouse. I had lots of help from office staff making our sponsor board, location signs and running registration. Thanks to three UGA Extension Scientists for coming down to talk about management plans, forestry production, and pest control. They covered many topics which was followed by a field visit. Here are some pictures:

Dr. David Moorhead gives presentation on weed control

Dr. David Moorhead gives presentation on weed control.

Dr. David Dickens discusses forest productivity

Dr. David Dickens discusses forest productivity.

Dr. Ben Jackson talks about woods road construction and importance of grade and dip spacing

Dr. Ben Jackson talks about woods road construction and importance of grade and dip spacing.

Dr. Dickens shows how to use the glass wedge prism to determine if trees are 'in' or 'out' of variable radius thinning

Dr. Dickens shows how to use the glass wedge prism to determine if trees are ‘in’ or ‘out’ of variable radius for calculating thinning.

Dr. Moorhead discusses weed control options and Dr. Dickens talks about thinning considerations

Dr. Moorhead discusses weed control options and Dr. Dickens talks about thinning considerations with attendees.

If you were unable to attend, we have a few handouts available on the front table in the office relating to tax tips for landowners, developing forest management plans, and a template for management plans.



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NexGen Cotton Variety Trial Results

Here are the results from the NexGen cotton variety trial we did with UGA Extension Cotton Agronomist Dr. Guy Collins. Thanks to grower Mat Thompson for collaborating with us on the trial. We planted on May 15th and harvested on October 23rd. Below is yield data from the trial and also a graph showing statistical data. It is important to remember that bars with the same letter indicate no statistical difference between particular lint yields. Mean differences from those lint yields result from field variability.




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Forage Crop Progression

Nelson Ryegrass & Crimson Clover-Forage 020

We were out looking at some forages planted for grazing and hay yesterday. Here is some Nelson ryegrass drilled with Crimson clover into a dormant bermudagrass pasture. These fields are coming along well with little to no issues. With clover, the seed depth is so shallow, you basically just set the seed on the ground since settings are not that shallow. When broadcasting clover, seed depth is usually not an issue onto dormant warm season sod. If drilling, you have to make sure the seeds are not planted more than ¼ – ½ inches deep. Much of the clover is coming up but some is coming up in more spots than others.

Nelson Ryegrass & Crimson Clover

Nelson Ryegrass & Crimson Clover

The only issue so far is weeds. We have mostly chickweed, but also carolia geranium too. We wondered about a pest emergent herbicide, but since clover is still in seedling stage, UGA Extension Weed Scientist Dr. Patrick McCullough says no herbicides are safe enough on seedling clover. With such few options of herbicides on clover, we were worried about ryegrass. Dr. McCullough says ryegrass would be tolerant, but selective weed control with clover is difficult enough with established clover.


In another field oats has been planted for grazing. This field has been typical of some issues in the county this year. Planted around October 20th, we went through such a dry spell and had a hard time getting a stand. We wondered about fertility being an issue since oats are less tolerable to pH below 6.0 then rye. Even with grid soil sampling, you can see small spots of low pH. Those spots were not evident here, just bad stand. In the very coverer of the field, the stand is much better. It was clear that low spot is much wetter and seed was able to germinate.

Oats 011

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Good Time To Control Japanese Fern & Chinese Privet

UGA Extension Forestry Specialists Dr. David Moorhead and Dr. David Dickens say now is a good time to control some invasive weeds with foliar sprays. Our main treatment options are foliar, basal, cut surface or injection. This time of the year, a foliar treatment is a good option.

Chinese Privet - UGA

Chinese Privet – UGA

Chinese privet seed soil viability is only one year, so where we see it, it is really dispersed by birds. Basal treatments of privet can be difficult because of number of branches. Dr. David Dickens says dormant-season treatments of privet with glyphosate at 3-5% solutions provide effective control with little non-target impacts. Anything over 5% is not economical. This is a foliar spray. Since glyphosate has no soil activity, it is safe for non-target plants. The greatest non-target impacts (discovered) were to sedges and winter-green species. If privet is next to woods, some grass could be damaged if it is not dormant. Direct sprays are effected for small and medium size plants with direct access. A mist blower would help with larger plants.

Japanese Climbing Fern

Japanese Climbing Fern

Japanese climbing fern is an invasive fern and does not produce flowers. It is native to eastern Asia and was introduced in the U.S. during the 1930s as an ornamental plant. A 3-5% solution of glyphosate is also good as a foliar spray. Here is some we saw as we were in the woods at our forestry program yesterday. Dr. Moorhead says we have to be careful because Japanese fern will adapt to burning, so this should not be our only method of control. With these small ferns coming up, now would be a good time to hop on a four-wheeler and use a hand-gun approach to treat these weeds.

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Weed Control Timing In Wheat

Wheat 001

There is not much wheat planted in the county this year. Prices are not as good for one thing. Many folks just didn’t get around to getting it in. Here is a field of AGS 2040 planted December 3rd. It was just too wet to get it in around Thanksgiving. We should be okay though. Plants are sprouting but not yet out of the ground. Here is a blog post from Grady County Ag Agent Brian Hayes on Wheat Growth Stages.

Wheat 002One thing we need to think about now is weed control. UGA Extension Weed Scientist Dr. Stanley Culpepper says we need to get our weed control done between now and Christmas. Once we get to February, it’ll be too late to manage ryegrass and wild raddish with herbicides.

Use of Harmony for broadleafs has a large window for safe application, but do not apply 2,4-D to wheat that is not fully tillered. Also, do not apply 2,4-D beyond the first hollow stem phase.

In terms of genetic stability, ryegrass is worse than pigweed. For control of ryegrass, it is important that each field is treated only once every two years with the respected chemistry. For instance, if we use Axial this year, we do not spray Axial or Hoelon on that piece of ground next year at all. The same applies to Powerflex and Osprey. If we do not rotate, we will lose the chemistry. Below is a graph of these chemical classes:


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Identifying Cogongrass

Cogongrass 009

I was out with Wallace Reed on Seminole Plantation Friday where some cogongrass has been spotted. Today Mark McClure with the Georgia Forestry Commission came by to inspect for treatment. We’re looking a little over an acre of congongrass. As a highly invasive species, Cogongrass will outcompete native grasses and eliminate wildlife habitats. It is very dense and hardly anything grows within it. It spreads by rhizomes, and usually shows up in a circular infestation. On this plantation, it is easy to see where it started and was spread by equipment. You could also notice the grass stopping along the edges where firebreaks were plowed.

There are actually two varieties. This is the taller variety that is less common. The shorter variety tends to fall over at the end of the season. This one is still standing. Mark has seen this variety grow as tall six feet tall.


Midrib not centered on cogongrass.

Midrib not centered on cogongrass.

You can identify it a few different ways. First, the midrib on the upper part of the leaf is off-center. Leaves edges are also very rough and tips pointed. The rhizomes are white, segmented and have a scaly appearance – like peeling an onion. The rhizomes are also very pointed. In a dense stand like this, you can place your hand on the ground and feel the sharp points. One of its biggest characteristics is the white, fluffy plume-like seed head it usually initiates in late spring. Occasionally, congongrass will initiate flowering once it is stressed (mowing, burning, freeze, etc.) Mark has seen its plumes in lower Thomas County as early as January, if temperatures are warm enough.

Rhizomes are whitish, branched, scaly and sharp at the tips.

Rhizomes are whitish, branched, scaly and sharp at the tips.

Thomas County has probably had between 8 and 10 reports of cogongrass this year. Overall, there has been less reports sites in 2014 than in many years. The GA Forestry Commission has been doing a good job with control. Most of their treatments will include imazapyr, which has soil activity. When you get around hardwood trees, like the live oaks here, they will use glyphosate – no soil activity. Burning normally causes cogongrass to initiate flowers. Mark says its good if you can do the burn much later than normal, like (Mid-spring). There is no way to know how long its infested this area, but it’ll take a few years to clear it up completely.

A few good cogongrass resources are Cogongrass from NRCS and also information off the Invasive Plant Atlas – Cogongrass.

Cogongrass 010

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