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June Disease/Insect Update

Reports from around the state and close to home have plant bugs eating up cotton, stink bugs in cotton and corn, southern corn rust and sugarcane aphids.

So far I have seen none of this except for a few stink bugs.  At the stage of growth most of our corn is you would need to have 1 bug per plant or 1 on every other plant.  At this level of infestation you will see stink bugs as you walk out into the field.  Southern Corn Rust is confirmed as close as Pulaski County, but I have yet to see it.  A fungicide as prevention would not be a bad idea, depending on the stage of growth of your corn and how much time you want to devote to scouting.  I will continue to monitor the situation and let you know if things change.

There have been many reports of plant bugs damaging cotton.  I have not been to fields with significant square loss due to plant bugs.  I have seen lygus bugs in corn, but have not captured any in cotton with my sweep net.  What we don’t want is to be missing more than 20% of our first position squares.  if this occurs it is usually due to plant bugs (like the lygus bug) and treatment is necessary.

Sugarcane aphids aren’t on weren’t on sorghum when I wrote this but they will be here soon. Continuously scout fields and treat when threshold levels are reached.  high sprayer pressure and ample gallons of water per acre are critical in controlling this devastating pest.

As with any of these pests diligent scouting will keep you ahead of any insects or diseases that may threaten your crops.  if you have any questions feel free to contact me.