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    Field Studies: What do you mean 5 bushels per acre is not significant?

    Utilizing sound research results to help make decisions on the farm is a wise business practice. It can be confusing, however, when you see two numbers that are clearly not the same labeled as “not significantly different.”

    Read More »

    S.D. Riparian Buffer Classification Program: Signup deadline Oct. 15

    During the 2017 SD Legislative Session, Governor Dennis Daugaard signed into law Senate Bill 66 (SB 66), also known as the “buffer strip” bill. Essentially, the bill provides an incentive for landowners to plant perennial vegetation on land adjoining qualified lakes, rivers, or streams via a property tax adjustment in order to improve water quality.

    Read More »

    Drought Stress Symptoms in Soybean

    Soybeans in South Dakota are in their moisture-critical reproductive stage. Drought stress during this growth stage can significantly impact yield, so here are some things to look for. When soybean is drought stressed, the leaves will flip over to show their silvery-green undersides. This is a defensive mechanism they use to reflect more light, reducing the amount of sunlight the plant takes in through its leaves.

    Read More »

    Farmers and Ranchers Needed for Survey

    SDSU Extension is devoted to meeting the needs of South Dakota farmers and ranchers in the state. If you are 18 years-of-age or older and farming or ranching is your occupation, please consider completing a 10-15 minute survey that would help us acquire information to design and implement future programs to serve farm and ranch families.

    Read More »

    Breakeven Yields: Corn & Soybeans

    The 2016 U.S. crop-year showed record acreage for soybeans and a large acreage for corn. The combination of more acres, warm temperatures, and adequately-timed rainfall events, resulted in also record yields. According to the NASS stocks for corn and soybeans have been increasing since 2014, a trend that’s likely to continue in 2017.

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    South Dakota Drought Update: June 6, 2017

    Dryness has been lingering in South Dakota for the last several weeks. The month of May was near average for temperature, and even a little on the cool side for the Eastern region. But now that temperatures have soared into the nineties and above, in combination with some wind, drought conditions have rapidly taken over Northern South Dakota.

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    Field Studies: Replicated Comparisons vs. Side-by-Side Comparisons

    The season is upon us and producers are heading out to the field to get their crops planted and established. Producers are interested in knowing what works best, yields the most, and especially what is most profitable during these tight economic times. Some may want to compare products or practices on their own farm or look at information from other farms or industry studies.

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    The Ethics of Decision Making

    Leaders often make challenging decisions. In your leadership role, you agreed to take on the responsibility that comes with the role and your actions are constantly being viewed by others. How you choose to make decisions will impact the type of leader you are and how followers like employees, committee members or volunteers will respect you. Will they view you as a leader with integrity or not?

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    Soybean Investigations: Research on Your Farm Seeks Farmer Cooperators

    Do you depend on the latest information focused on soybean products? Are you constantly seeking out cost-effective information and looking for what actually works on South Dakota farms? Have you wanted to try a new product but didn’t want to commit to it on your entire field? Have you wondered if a fungicide application is beneficial? Thought about late season nitrogen applications? Do you have soybean cyst nematode and wonder whether or not the seed treatments work? This short list is just a sampling of the many different issues that are occurring in SD soybean fields today.

    Read More »

    Seeing Dead Soybean Plants in a Circular Pattern? Could Be Due to Lightning

    What are the odds that a soybean plant can be killed by lightning? Very low! In a recent ten year period, Eastern South Dakota had an average of one to two strikes per square kilometer, per year. While quite uncommon for lightning to damage row crops, it does happen. Thunderstorms can have lightning that can burn soybeans plants leading to their death.

    Read More »

    Drought Stress Symptoms in Soybean

    Soybeans in South Dakota are in their moisture-critical reproductive stage. Drought stress during this growth stage can significantly impact yield, so here are some things to look for. When soybean is drought stressed, the leaves will flip over to show their silvery-green undersides. This is a defensive mechanism they use to reflect more light, reducing the amount of sunlight the plant takes in through its leaves.

    Read More »

    South Dakota Climate & Drought Summary

    As of August 3, 2017, just over 82% of South Dakota is in drought. The area of drought has hovered around 80 percent for the last few weeks. The South and Southeast have gradually worsened recently, due to both dryness and heat.

    Read More »

    Thinking about applying a fungicide to hail-damaged crops?

    The recent storms in East South Dakota brought along rain, high wind, and in some cases hail. Some corn and soybean fields have heavy hail damage. With the hail that parts of Brookings and Codington counties received, some growers are wondering if a fungicide application is needed to protect their hail damaged crops.

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    Fall Noxious Weed Control

    Fall weed control can give the best weed control but it also can be a poor time. If the noxious weeds were sprayed or clipped earlier this summer and there is good weed growth now, this would be a good time to spray these weeds and get a good kill.

    Read More »

    S.D. Riparian Buffer Classification Program: Signup deadline Oct. 15

    During the 2017 SD Legislative Session, Governor Dennis Daugaard signed into law Senate Bill 66 (SB 66), also known as the “buffer strip” bill. Essentially, the bill provides an incentive for landowners to plant perennial vegetation on land adjoining qualified lakes, rivers, or streams via a property tax adjustment in order to improve water quality.

    Read More »

    Playing in the Sandbox at Dakotafest 2017

    During Dakotafest 2017 (August 15 - 17) under the SDSU Extension tent, both young and old alike will have the opportunity to literally play in a sandbox—and possibly learn a little something about how watersheds work at the same time.

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    Understanding Drought & Heat Stress in Crops

    South Dakota has seen higher than average temperatures in the last few weeks and the current U.S. drought monitor shows that almost 80% of the state is facing moisture deficit conditions with Central and North Central region facing the worst.

    Read More »

    Soybean Investigations: Research on Your Farm Seeks Farmer Cooperators

    Do you depend on the latest information focused on soybean products? Are you constantly seeking out cost-effective information and looking for what actually works on South Dakota farms? Have you wanted to try a new product but didn’t want to commit to it on your entire field? Have you wondered if a fungicide application is beneficial? Thought about late season nitrogen applications? Do you have soybean cyst nematode and wonder whether or not the seed treatments work? This short list is just a sampling of the many different issues that are occurring in SD soybean fields today.

    Read More »

    Consider SCN Sampling This Spring

    Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) silently robs significant soybean yield without displaying obvious above ground symptoms. Unfortunately, when SCN is introduced in the field, it can never be completely eliminated; however, SCN can be managed to keep SCN population below injury level. By the time one soybean cyst is observed on the soybean roots or in the soil sample, likely more cysts are occurring in that field.

    Read More »

    Soil Health Principles

    Soil health is a very important natural resource concern; however, knowledge of how to build soil health is not widespread. The principles of soil health should be addressed as often as possible. At a recent South Dakota Soil Health Challenge meeting in Mitchell, Jay Fuhrer (USDA-NRCS) presented his five principles of soil health: 1. Soil Armor,  2. Minimizing Soil Disturbance, 3. Plant Diversity, 4. Continual live plant root and 5. Livestock Integration.

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    Soil Testing Labs

    Crop Producers, agronomists, gardeners, homeowners and anyone else who is thinking about taking soil samples this fall or next spring need to be aware that South Dakota State University no longer offers commercial testing. (Effective Oct, 2011). Below is a list of nearby state or private laboratories that can be used for crop production fields, gardens and lawns. The private laboratories are not necessarily recommended or endorsed, however many will give university recommendations when asked. Crop producers, agronomists, gardeners, and home owners with questions on sample submissions, analysis charges and recommendations should contact the laboratory of interest.

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    Cover Crop Adoption: Farmers’ perceived benefits & barriers

    Cover crops are generally defined as crops planted between cash crops to cover and protect the soil. Some demonstrated benefits of cover crops include: reduced soil erosion, increased soil organic matter, increased biological diversity, increased nitrogen supply, and weed control. Depending on the farmers’ objectives, different species of cover crops can be planted. For example, if a farmer’s main objective is to increase nitrogen supply, then legume cover crops best suited to the farm area should be selected.

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    Gypsum Misconceptions

    The consideration of gypsum as a soil amendment has become a popular topic in crop production agriculture. However, correctly understanding the chemical function of gypsum and lime in soil is needed to properly place this amendment. Gypsum, which is calcium sulfate after applied to the soil and dissolved in the water it disassociates into calcium and sulfate.

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    New SDSU Extension report provides status of native grasslands & woodlands in Eastern S.D.

    SDSU Extension, in partnership with a variety of non-government, state, and federal agencies, has recently released a public report on the status of native plant communities in Eastern South Dakota. The report is based on a comprehensive look at the Eastern South Dakota landscape that incorporated the use of field and tract-level historic Farm Service Agency (FSA) cropland history, coupled with high resolution aerial photographs provided through the USDA National Agriculture Imagery Program (NAIP).

    Read More »

    Field Studies: What do you mean 5 bushels per acre is not significant?

    Utilizing sound research results to help make decisions on the farm is a wise business practice. It can be confusing, however, when you see two numbers that are clearly not the same labeled as “not significantly different.”

    Read More »

    S.D. Riparian Buffer Classification Program: Signup deadline Oct. 15

    During the 2017 SD Legislative Session, Governor Dennis Daugaard signed into law Senate Bill 66 (SB 66), also known as the “buffer strip” bill. Essentially, the bill provides an incentive for landowners to plant perennial vegetation on land adjoining qualified lakes, rivers, or streams via a property tax adjustment in order to improve water quality.

    Read More »

    Farmers and Ranchers Needed for Survey

    SDSU Extension is devoted to meeting the needs of South Dakota farmers and ranchers in the state. If you are 18 years-of-age or older and farming or ranching is your occupation, please consider completing a 10-15 minute survey that would help us acquire information to design and implement future programs to serve farm and ranch families.

    Read More »

    Soybean Investigations: Research on Your Farm Seeks Farmer Cooperators

    Do you depend on the latest information focused on soybean products? Are you constantly seeking out cost-effective information and looking for what actually works on South Dakota farms? Have you wanted to try a new product but didn’t want to commit to it on your entire field? Have you wondered if a fungicide application is beneficial? Thought about late season nitrogen applications? Do you have soybean cyst nematode and wonder whether or not the seed treatments work? This short list is just a sampling of the many different issues that are occurring in SD soybean fields today.

    Read More »

    Consider SCN Sampling This Spring

    Soybean cyst nematode (SCN) silently robs significant soybean yield without displaying obvious above ground symptoms. Unfortunately, when SCN is introduced in the field, it can never be completely eliminated; however, SCN can be managed to keep SCN population below injury level. By the time one soybean cyst is observed on the soybean roots or in the soil sample, likely more cysts are occurring in that field.

    Read More »

    Four Feedback Foes

    As a supervisor you should set time aside at least once a year, to conduct formal performance reviews for your employees. The value in doing so will definitely outweigh the time it will take out of your busy schedule to conduct this important management element. Annual reviews should be a productive time to have an open discussion with employees, share your thoughts about their work and performance progress, discuss their future with your farm/ranch or agri-business, and allow for focused discussion without distractions.

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    Five Tips on Time Management

    Have you ever heard anyone say they are not busy? I am guessing not. No matter how much technology we have at our finger tips or improved ways to complete an agricultural related task, you won’t find many people saying they don’t have their plate full or even over-flowing. Heavy workloads, and the feeling of being overwhelmed or stressed does not may our days very enjoyable. Is the reason for always seeming busy a time management issue? and learning some important tips to help your organize your time and help with focus.

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    Three ways to understand difficult people

    Managers and supervisors have many challenges to deal with daily in order to strive to help their company reach goals, be productive, and profitable. One of these challenges is dealing with difficult people. Their ability to lead difficult employees, which create an unproductive working environment and shift the employee into a high performing worker is an important skill for managers.

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    Compared to What? Interpreting Research Results

    In this information age, farmers may find it challenging to identify trustable sources. There are many companies trying to sell products attached to claims that may or may not be true. It is important for farmers to find a path through the hype and be able to determine if a product will benefit them or not. Statistical analysis is one way to separate fact from fiction.

    Read More »

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