News from Your Federated Agronomists | October 23, 2018
soybean plot ready to harvest
Playing the Match Game in Crop Management

What children learn as they try to put square blocks into round holes is the same principle growers must apply: the pieces have to match.

Matching chemistry with traits is critical to success. Crop yields – and sometimes crop survival – require that the right seed goes in for the right chemical to be applied later. And with resistant weeds dragging down yield, the pressure is on for well-matched seed and crop protection.

Federated continues to recommend the Liberty Link system, which uses Legend® seed and Liberty® herbicide to control tall waterhemp and giant ragweed. “There is no known resistance to the Liberty Link system,” said Rod Gustafson, agronomy center manager at Federated’s Albertville location. “It’s a good tool that is available to farmers.”

People talk about yield drag with chemicals, Gustafson noted, “but if you aren’t getting control of the weeds, the weeds are going to put a drag on yield, too!”

“Pick the [crop protection] chemical you want to use, and then buy the trait,” he said, for both corn and soybeans. That ensures that you will be able to address weed concerns with the best product(s).

The Liberty Link system includes a new double-stack soybean for 2019 that combines Liberty and Roundup for better control of the toughest weeds. Read more about Liberty here.

An important reminder: “Still use a good pre-emerge herbicide,” said Gustafson. “Put that pre down, whether you are using Liberty or Roundup, or even dicamba.”

For dicamba or Roundup Ready® Xtend® 2 soybeans, Federated offers Engenia®, XtendiMax®, and FeXapan™ for farmer-applied use.

Whatever match you choose, “take advantage of pre-buy incentives this fall,” said Gustafson. The new double-stack from Liberty will be in limited supply, so order early. And talk to your Federated Agronomist about the best choices for your farm.
plot corn ready to harvest
Discovery Plot Results Pending

Discovery Plot harvest is moving along, but not yet complete. Stay tuned for a full report on the results of Federated’s soybean and corn plots in upcoming Agronomy Updates. In the meantime, be sure to talk to your Federated Agronomist about any questions on seed choices as you make pre-buy plans.
Craig Loen
Federated Focus: A Service, A Person
Success: Spring, Fall,
and Everything in Between

With every passing season, Craig Loen shares his passion: “To make growers succeed.” In his role as an agronomy sales rep, Loen knows that Federated’s success is dependent upon growers’ success, and vice versa.

As the yield monitors track the harvest, it’s time to look back at what impacted this year’s success. “If you remember the fall of 2017, we didn’t get very much P & K spread . . . and then Spring [2018] was slow to show up,” said Loen. Snow and cold kept everyone out of the fields, making it hard to apply nutrients ahead of the planters. “And there was basically no rain in May,” he said.

Since Loen worked as a spraying applicator in his early years with Federated, he appreciates the complexities of scheduling nutrient applications in the spring, so he highly recommends applying P, K & S in the fall. “It’s good agronomic practice,” he said, both from a timing and economic perspective.

Loen has a good sense of the economic challenges for today’s growers. Late springs followed by late harvests (such as this year with the heavy rains) keep everyone wondering how to maximize ROI. His career has focused on managing those challenges for himself and the growers he serves.

Loen grew up on a dairy farm, attended the U of M in ag education, and worked several other jobs before he went back to milking cows for 16 years in the early 2000s (his wife’s cows, he said, “her passion”). When it’s time to milk the cows, you have to milk the cows, and it’s the same with crop management.

Anything done in the fall benefits spring planting, because when it’s time to plant, it’s time to plant. “You need to get it done,” said Loen.

Crop nutrients are a “get ‘er done” fact of farming, so whether it’s starting with a traditional soil sample or grid sampling for VRT applications, Loen stressed the need to avoid the rush of spring and get nutrients applied now. And that includes lime applications.

Success is measured by the harvest, and when the bushels per acre rise, the nutrients in the soil fall and need to be replenished.

Take advantage of Federated Agronomists like Loen who really enjoy their jobs. “This is my favorite job off the farm,” said Loen. “I enjoy helping growers make the right decisions . . . make sure they are profitable.”

Talk to Loen or your local Federated Agronomist to schedule fall nutrient applications soon!