Identifying pests, diseases, disorders and developmental stages in Midwestern corn crops just became easier. New and larger color photographs, updated information on plant diseases and crop production, and additional topics are included in the second edition of Iowa State University's popular Corn Field Guide, now available for purchase online.
Growers and agronomists will appreciate new environmental criteria added to help identify diseases. "If a farmer is field scouting for diseases and discovers something abnormal, he can use the photos and descriptions in the guide to begin to identify what might be happening," says Daren Mueller, assistant professor of plant pathology and microbiology, who assisted with guide revisions. "Then, if he reads under the 'Environment' section that the disease exists in moist, cool conditions, but it's been hot and dry, he knows he needs to look further in the guide."
New guide provides corn farmers with more and better information for making decisions
Mueller is a principal investigator on the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) team of the Climate and Corn-based Cropping Systems Coordinated Agricultural Project, also known as the Sustainable Corn Project. It's a 10-university research project in the Corn Belt, funded by USDA and led by Iowa State University. Team members are gathering and analyzing field trial data from 35 field sites and thousands of farmers in eight Midwestern states in an effort to create a suite of practices that make corn-based cropping systems more resilient in response to climate change. Mueller's team collects and analyzes IPM data to assess the impact of the field practices on pests, weeds and diseases under specific environmental conditions.
"With the guide scheduled to be updated, it was an opportunity to incorporate what is known about how climate and extreme weather events affect corn production, insects and diseases. The new guide provides the farmer with more information for making decisions," says Jamie Benning, a program specialist with Iowa State University Extension and principal investigator on the Sustainable Corn Project.
Updated version of the popular guide includes over 200 photos and illustrations and other information related to corn production
Updating the guide was a collaborative effort between ISU Extension, ISU's Integrated Pest Management program and the Sustainable Corn Project. "Numerous Extension specialists, engineers, agronomists, plant pathologists, entomologists, weed scientists and nematologists with ISU provided text and images for this guide. It was a team effort," says Mueller.
Over 200 photos and illustrations are packed into the updated version of the pocket-sized Corn Field Guide, which is now available for purchase online. For more information contact Daren Mueller at 515-460-8000 or [email protected]; and Jamie Benning at 515-294-6038 or [email protected].