A website from UGA Cooperative Extension

News, events, and happenings in Colquitt County agriculture.

It is dry!!! The dry weather has impacted the maturity of the peanut crop in the area, but harvest conditions have been good for cotton and peanuts. Forage producers are waiting on rain to establish winter annual forages. Colquitt County received 0.76 inches of rain from September 1, 2023, to October 8, 2023, and the source of this data is the Sunbelt Expo site of the UGA Weather Network. This information is illustrated below. The second illustration below is from CoCaRaH’s website for the same period of time from the reporting site located at the office. The green line shows actual rainfall and is compared to normal 30-year rainfall amounts from NOAA.

The good news is the increase in rain chances this week for the Colquitt County area.  Below is the forecast for the next 4 days from National Weather service.    

The US drought monitor comes out every Thursday. The statistics below show that Colquitt County is classified as 100% abnormally dry with 10% classified as moderate drought on October 5, 2023, which is an increase from 54% abnormally dry the week before.  

Deer survey!!!  Over the last several years, deer have increasingly impacted Georgia farmers and been detrimental across the Georgia’s food and fiber production. Georgia Farm Bureau has collaborated with the Georgia Department of Agriculture and UGA Extension to develop a deer impact survey to determine losses due to deer across the state over the last 5 years. Data collected from this survey will be used in support of increased mitigation measures and reform, research expansion, and legislative education. 

Peanuts: The peanut harvest is in full swing, but peanut maturity seems to have slowed down to a crawl. Last week, Georgia 06G was running in the mid- to upper 140s in days to maturity. Factors such as canopy defoliation and dry field conditions need to be considered. According to Dr. Bob Kemerait, if you are more than 2 weeks from digging and most of the canopy is there, then a fungicide combination of Bravo plus a systemic fungicide might be in order. If you are more than 2 weeks from digging and the leaf canopy is greater than 50 percent defoliated from leaf spot, then a fungicide spray would not benefit the peanuts. If you are less than two weeks from digging, then no fungicide application would be necessary. Peanuts will continue to move in maturity until temperatures reach the lower 40’s and lower for three mornings in a row. When this occurs the plants to shut down.  

If you are interested in Episode 44 of “All about the Pod” then you can listen to it here. Topics include diseases, maturity and so much other stuff.

The Colquitt County peanut variety trial was harvested this week. This trial contained six varieties, such as Georgia 06G, Georgia 21, Georgia 22, TifNv, Georgia 16HO, and FL 331. Once all the information is compiled, the results will be available.

Nematode Samples!!!  NOW is the time to collect nematode samples.  With cotton harvest having started, it is time to take cotton nematode samples. To have a good representation of nematode populations within a field, predictive nematode samples should be taken in late fall usually just after cotton has been harvested.  It is better to take samples prior to harvest, but most growers find it easier to sample after the cotton stalks are mowed.  However, do not wait too long after harvest to sample because nematode populations will begin to decline once their food source is removed. Avoid sampling fields that are too wet or too dry. A good rule of thumb is that it is best to sample soil that would be about right for good seed germination. More information about nematode sampling in cotton is available from a previous blog post from the Colquitt County Ag Report.   

Time to Nematode Sample in Cotton Fields 

Forages: The dry weather has impacted some winter annual forage planting. If rain materializes then the end of the week will provide a great opportunity to establish winter annual forages.  Please refer to the blog post from the Colquitt County Ag report titled  Establishment of Winter Annual Forages!!  This will refresh our memories about seeding rate, depth and other cultural practices.  

I while back I got a question or two about dry weather and planting winter annual forages.  According to Dr. Dennis Hancock, Former UGA Forage Agronomist, the small grains (rye, triticale, wheat, and – to some degree – oats) tend to germinate relatively well in drier conditions. Though annual ryegrass is the most productive winter annual grass, it is sensitive to dry conditions at planting.

Barley yellow dwarf virus has been a topic of conversation in oats over the last couple of years. Bird cherry oat aphids can infect wheat and oats with barley yellow dwarf disease which may reduce later forage growth. Several seed treatments such as clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam are labelled for aphid control in winter annual forages. Gaucho and Attendant are not labeled for use on ryegrass. Gaucho XT, Cruiser and NipsIt Inside also contain fungicides. If you are interesting in more information please contact your local county Extension agent or the UGA Pest Management Handbook.

I had a question or two about wrapping dry hay with plastic. According to the resource Baleage: Frequently Asked Questions.  Some producers who have limited inside space for storing dry hay rolls have successfully wrapped dry hay for outside storage. Typically, all that’s needed is two layers of plastic with about a 20% overlap at the edges—just enough plastic to cover the bale. For best results, allow the hay to go through the sweat period (typically 1 to 2 weeks) before wrapping.

When can I sample my baleage?  Baleage samples may be collected multiple times, which include post-baling, before wrapping, after wrapping, and just before feeding. Information about sampling can be obtained at your local Extension office.  

If you would like to sample just after baling but before wrapping, then collect core samples just prior to wrapping using the dry hay protocol. If you want to sample after wrapping, then collect core samples from various locations in the tube or from several individually wrapped bales from the same lot. Ideally, this would occur post-fermentation (6+ weeks post-wrapping). Sometimes we like to sample just before feeding. If this is the case, then collect core samples from the tube or lot of bales that you plan to feed next. This decreases potential spoilage due to hole punctures over a long period of time.

Colquitt County Cattlemen’s Meeting Questioner

To meet the educational needs of local cattle and forage producers, assessments need to be done. Below is a link to a brief survey that would only take a minute or two to complete. Thanks for your time.https://ugeorgia.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_9FhKU5Wvut4BxpY

Have a great week and if you have questions please let me know.

Jeremy M. Kichler

Colquitt County Extension Coordinator

The University of Georgia Cooperative Extension does not endorse or guarantee the performance of any products mentioned in this update.