Peanut Burrower Bugs (Pangaeus bilineatus) have been collected and identified, by the Virginia Tech Insect Identification Laboratory, on the Tidewater AREC farm. Peanut burrower bugs are a subterranean pests that feed on pods and pegs of developing peanuts. Burrower bugs have most likely been around for a while but Lorsban (active ingredient is chlorpyrifos) was controlling their populations. Since the removal of Lorsban (chlorpyrifos) from market shelves, there are no effective chemical controls for producers. Damage caused by the peanut burrower bugs looks similar to stink bug damage. This damage is only seen when peanuts are shelled. The skin is removed at buying points by graders: The insect does not leave an indicator of damage on the shell of the peanut. Peanut burrower bug is more of an issue in hot dry years, and they are just as sporadic as southern corn rootworm.
In terms of prevention, there is no chemical control with the loss of lorsban. Some producers have gone back to using a moldboard plow and completely turning over the soil. Some producers have been planting earlier hoping for a thicker hull development earlier in the season. Damage is minimal in Suffolk, VA, but it is something to keep in mind.
Crawlers are the most vulnerable stage to control the Japanese maple scale under nursery conditions. Monitoring crawler activity throughout the growing season will aid to refine the timing of deployment of any control tactic.
Graduate student Mollie Wyatt (Virginia Tech, Entomology Department) took the lead on creating a video showing us the step-by-step process on how to do the ‘tape method’ for monitoring crawler activity for this pest in ornamental trees.
You can click on the link below to access to a short version of this video. You might need an actual computer to watch that clip. The full version will be posted soon on our VCE website. Stay tune! Funding to support this project was provided by the Southern IPM Center and USDA NIFA.
Cereal leaf beetle, a pest of small grains, overwinters as an adult.
When temperatures warm, adults migrate to small grains to lay eggs; eggs are yellow-orange in color, usually in the midvein of the leaf, and may be single or several eggs end-to-end.
I saw a few eggs at our research center field today (March 9), they were a bit darker (and stickier) than their normal color. A female may lay 50 eggs. Larvae have orange-yellow bodies with dark heads and legs, but often appear as shiny black due to the covering of mucus and fecal matter they have on their body (they look like small slugs).
Larval feeding strips leaves of phytosynthetic tissue and can cause reductions in grain quality and yield. A temperature-based model developed using Virginia and North Carolina data shows that peak egg lay occurs at approximately 182 degree-days (using January 1 as a biofix; a lower development threshold of 8℃, and an upper development threshold of 25℃). With our warm February 2023 temperatures, we hit an earlier-than-normal peak egg threshold in Suffolk, VA on March 3 (I used the Tidewater AREC WeatherSTEM as my temperature source). The larval peak follows the egg peak by an average of 17.5 days, which would be the third week of March for Suffolk. It is important to note that the model states that extremely hot or cold years may affect its accuracy. Dominic Reisig (Professor and Extension Specialist, North Carolina State University) posted that the Salisbury, NC egg peak was predicted to occur on March 5-11, but a cooler forecast may push back the larval peak to the last week of March. As of March 8, Warsaw, VA is at 123 degree-days for cereal leaf beetle and the Eastern Shore has accumulated 119 degree-days.
To scout for cereal leaf beetle, inspect 10 tillers (stems) in at least 10 different sites. If you are seeing mostly eggs, you should scout again in 5-7 days when some have hatched into small larvae. The eggs may be parasitized. Both Virginia and North Carolina recommend an economic threshold of 25 eggs + small larvae (total) per 100 tillers. At least half of that 25 should be larvae. An insecticide spray, if needed, should target the newly-hatched larvae. Please refer to pages 4-44 and 4-45 of the Virginia Cooperative Extension 2023 Field Crops Pest Management Guide for additional information and spray recommendations. Another useful resource is a Journal of Integrated Pest Management article by Philips et al. (2011), Fifty Years of Cereal Leaf Beetle in the U.S.: An Update on Its Biology, Management, and Current Research.
I want to remind everyone that the Virginia Ag Expo, Virginia’s largest field day, is next Thursday, Aug 4. The Expo is an educational, marketing, and social event that farmers and agribusiness look forward to each year. It moves from one location to another each year and strives to showcase the diversity of Virginia Agriculture. Our host this year is Mill Creek Farms and the event will be located at Camden Farm, which is located near Port Royal, right off of Highway 17 in Caroline County.
Precision for Profits is the theme for the 2022 Virginia Agricultural Expo. There will be a wide variety of agribusinesses present (currently over 85 exhibitors) showcasing the latest equipment, technology, goods, and services. Virginia Cooperative Extension will be working with NRCS to highlight the diversity of soils on this farm and the high potential for precision agriculture practices. Field plots are once again a walking, go-at-your-own-pace tour designed to fit your interest and schedule. Breakfast and Lunch will be catered by the vendors shown below.
The Virginia Ag Expo is jointly sponsored by the Virginia Grain Growers and Virginia Soybean Associations, in Cooperation with Virginia Cooperative Extension.
This event is FREE to the public. Click the link below to let us know you are coming!
The upcoming weekend rainfall (our meteorologists seem assured that it’ll be widespread) should greatly help parts of Virginia that are short on or getting short of topsoil moisture and position us perfectly for a good start to the soybean growing season.
However, with the rainfall comes cooler soil temperatures. Below are predictions for 4-inch soil moisture and soil temperature over the next 10 days from Orange (one of the coolest parts of Virginia) and Suffolk (one of the warmest parts). As you see, soil temperatures will plummet from relatively warm (>60o) to nearly 50o or less over the weekend. While soybean seed will germinate and emerge in a reasonable amount of time at 60O, germination and emergence will be very slow when temperatures dip below this.
Therefore, heed my suggestion and make sure that you have a good fungicide seed treatment on anything that you are planting now or early next week.
Below is the fungicide efficacy chart from our Pest Management Guide. The main diseases that we need to concern ourselves with are Rhizoctonia and Fusarium sp. If in wet soils, Pythium and Phytophtora sp. could also be a problem with slow-emerging soybean. Be sure to protect a slow-emerging crop with a fungicide containing the active ingredients that provide good to excellent control of the appropriate disease.
Many may have already planted. Some have stopped planting other crops such and peanut and cotton due to cool soils and started planting soybean instead. Regardless, an advantage of soybean is that it tolerates a wide range of planting dates. I’ve found no advantage to planting soybean before May and have seen little yield penalty from planting as late as the first week of June, under most conditions. There are advantages to planting early and planting late, but that is not the subject of this post. Contact me for more detailed discussion on this matter-it will take more that a few comments.
With that said, I’ve always preferred May planting due to less risk of frost damage and slow emergence that is common with earlier planting. Still there are big differences in management when planting in early- versus late-May. Here I’ll review a few of these.
Plant earliest maturing varieties first, then move to later maturing varieties. This will spread risk and harvest dates. We have however observed that early-planting and/or early-maturing varieties work better under productive soils/fields. If planting on poor soils/unproductive fields, later-maturing varieties will extend the growing season and push the critical pod- and seed-filling stages to less stressful times of the year.
Always plant into moisture. But don’t plant more than 1 inch deep when soils are cool or emergence will be delayed substantially. One-half to 3/4 of an inch is adequate. For later planting dates when soils are warm, one can plant as deep as 1.5 inches and get rapid emergence.
If planting into cool soils (usually before mid-May), use a good fungicide seed treatment. It could take 10 days or more for the soybean to emerge; plenty of time for soil-born seedling diseases to attack.
A final plant population of 70 to 100 thousand plants per acre is usually adequate for full-season plantings. This means that 95 to 130 thousand seed per acre is enough, depending on expected emergence. Our research and in other states have observed that less seed is needed with low-yielding fields and greater seeding rates are needed with high-yielding fields. The problem is knowing how much the field will yield.
As always, contact me for more details regarding these tips or discuss other early-season soybean issues.
Which soybean variety is best suited to my region? State variety testing programs provide critical research to help answer that question by evaluating hundreds of soybean varieties every year across multiple locations within a state. But what if we think beyond the bounds of our state borders when it comes to variety evaluation?
While a single state alone provides valuable data, our growing regions often cross state lines. A location in southeastern Virginia may share more similarities to sites in eastern North Carolina than it does to the Northern Piedmont of Virginia. Furthermore, by combining variety testing data across multiple states, we can create a more robust dataset that allows us to better predict which varieties are best suited to specific regions and growing conditions.
Pulling and combining data from select locations within multiple state variety testing programs can be a daunting task. Over the past year, a team of variety testing coordinators from Tennessee, Arkansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Virginia have been working to make that process a lot easier. Through funding from the United Soybean Board and in collaboration with Centrec Consulting Group, LLC, we created a tool that will allow users of variety test data to combine and visualize soybean variety testing data across multiple states in the Mid-South. This new tool is available at https://marketviewdb.centrec.com/?bi=MidSouthVarietyTrials.
In addition to choosing locations, another key component of this database is the ability to filter the results to include only the relative maturities, brands, and herbicide tolerances that you want. It can also let you chose whether to include irrigated and/or non-irrigated, or full-season and/or double-crop sites. You can also chose the soil textures that you are interested in.
I won’t go into the details of how to use the site in this blog. But, try it out. Contact me with questions or comments.
The database currently contains 2018 – 2020 data but will be updated as 2021 soybean variety trial data becomes available. We hope that you find this tool useful. We would value your feedback/suggestions as we continue to refine this product to better meet stakeholder needs. A brief survey can be found at https://utk.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6u5lHEwEOXnXODA.
The database described in this article was developed with support from the United Soybean Board.
Today, Aug 26 2021, we pod blasted a few peanut cultivars
grown at the Tidewater AREC in large plots to observe pod maturity at this
time. While the peanuts planted in the first week of May might be ready in
20-25 days from now, those planted in late May are approximately 30 days from the
optimum maturity. Keep in mind that weather is also a decisive factor;
therefore, sampling for maturity again in 10-14 days from now will allow to
pinpoint more accurately the day when peanuts are ready for digging.
In the past weeks, a few strawberry growers have expressed their concern about the possibility of cyclamen mite infestations. After visiting some strawberry farms in the Chesapeake area this week, I found symptoms of cyclamen mite damage in a few fields. Because of the small size of the mites, I took leaf samples from the symptomatic plants and confirmed the presence of the mites in the laboratory.
The cyclamen mite is a serious pest of strawberries. It has
been reported in most strawberry-producing states. Cyclamen mites are tiny
mites (0.001 in long) that feed on the tissue of nonexpanded and newly unfolded
leaves in the strawberry plants. Adults and immatures of the cyclamen mite are
considerably smaller than two-spotted spider mites and cannot be easily seen
with the naked or a hand lens. Symptoms of cyclamen mite infestation include
severely crumpled and crinkled leaves, as well as stunted plants.
The presence of cyclamen mites was confirmed mostly on ‘Ruby June’ strawberries, but they can infest any strawberry cultivar. Strawberry growers in the Virginia Beach metropolitan area and the eastern shore should beware of the presence of this pest mite in their field. There are very few miticides available for the control of cyclamen mites. Unfortunately, the same products used for the control of two-spotted spider mites do not always provide control for cyclamen mites. The best performing product against this pest is Portal (fenpyroximate). Agri-mek (abamectin), is also labeled for cyclamen mites. Despite being miticides, Acramite and Magister are not labeled for control of cyclamen mite and may not provide enough protection against it.
Dr. Lorena Lopez Department of Entomology Virginia Tech | Eastern Shore Agricultural Research and Extension Center (ESAREC) (954) 529 9042 | firstname.lastname@example.org