Volume 2, Issue 13
December 31, 2019
This newsletter is an update on current topics and events in agriculture in Boone, Dallas, Jasper, Madison, Marshall, Polk, Story, Tama, and Warren counties.

Meaghan Anderson
Extension Field Agronomist

ISU Extension & Outreach
220 H Avenue
Nevada, Iowa 50201
Office:  515.382.6551
Cell:     319.331.0058

Upcoming Events

IDALS 2020 Pesticide Testing Schedule

Jan 8 - Crop Advantage Series, Ames

Jan 15 - Crop Advantage Series, Fort Dodge

Farm Bill Meetings - various times, locations

Private Pesticide Applicator Trainings
See a list of my trainings here
Search the county calendar to look for a training near you

Jan 28 - Soil Fertility Workshop, Winterset

Feb 21 -
Soil Fertility Workshop, Knoxville

Handy Links

Central Iowa Crop Update
Updates from an agronomist and weed nerd in central Iowa.

In this issue:

  • January 7 - Farmer group discussion in Adel
  • Register for the Ames Crop Advantage Now!
  • Soil Fertility meetings this winter
  • Choosing a corn hybrid or soybean variety
  • Soybean aphid yellow book available
  • Iowa Farmland Value Report released

January 7 - Farmer Group Discussion in Adel

I am working with J. Arbuckle to host a farmer group discussion in Adel on January 7. He is interested in visiting with central Iowa farmers who have thought about implementing practices like cover crops or no-till on their farms but have not yet done it for any reason. See the details for the meeting below and please reach out to me via email ( or phone (319-331-0058) if you are interested in participating! Thank you!

January 7 - Brickyard Burgers & Brews
1802 Greene St., Adel, IA
9:30 a.m. - noon, with a free lunch to follow

As a token of thanks for helping with this study, the research team from ISU will provide you with $49.99 for your participation.

Register for the Ames Crop Advantage Series now!

The Crop Advantage Series will again be offered at 14 locations across the state this year, bringing unbiased research updates and Iowa State University faculty to you. The Ames Crop Advantage meeting will be hosted at the Quality Inn & Suites on January 8. We will have a number of breakout session topics for farmers to choose from including a review of 2019 insect issues, tar spot and other corn/soybean disease updates, grain drying and storage 101, weed management for the 2020s, hemp production updates, rules of the road for ag equipment, and much more!

Registration is open NOW and tomorrow is the last day for early registration for the Ames location! Early registration is $50 and includes refreshments, lunch, meeting proceedings booklet, private pesticide applicator recertification, and CCA credits. Registration less than 7 days prior to the meeting or as a walk-in is $60. Look at the full schedule and register for the Ames location here. Visit to see schedules for or register for other locations!

Each meeting is approved for recertification for Iowa private pesticide applicators. Applicators must attend the entire meeting to receive recertification. Recertification is included with the meeting registration. 

Soil Fertility Meetings this winter

I will be offering two Soil Fertility Workshops this winter to help farmers with soil test interpretations and recommendations. The cost of managing soil fertility changes with the price of fertilizer and increased demand for nutrients with our increasing crop yields. Understanding soil fertility basics will help better manage nutrients and each fertilizer dollar spent. These workshops will help you:
  • Discover what research shows about crop response to different soil test levels
  • Calculate how much phosphate and potash your own crop removes from the soil
  • Understand the odds of getting a return on your fertilizer investment based on your soil test results
  • Know when you should or should not alter fertilizer application rates to match your purchasing needs
  • Understand soil management decisions so you can be a better fertilizer consumer
Please reach out if you have any questions or register for either of the two meetings below.

January 28 - co-hosted by Dallas and Madison Counties
Location: Madison County Extension, Winterset
9:00 a.m. to noon with lunch to follow
$20 registration -
more information/online registration or call 515-462-1001

February 21 - co-hosted by Warren and Marion Counties (this meeting with Rebecca Vittetoe!)
Location: Marion County Extension, Knoxville
9:00 a.m. to noon with lunch to follow
$40 registration - more information available soon online or call 641-842-2014


Choosing a corn hybrid or soybean variety

In my last newsletter, I shared some resources for yield results. Mark Licht wrote a nice article on interpreting these yield results and some considerations to remember when choosing a corn hybrid or soybean variety. Read more about his thoughts here.

Yield result resources:

Soybean Aphid Yellow Book available

Erin Hodgson has released her soybean aphid insecticide evaluations for 2019. This yellow book is available to download in our ISU Extension and Outreach Store here, or Erin tells me she will have a few hard copies with her for the Crop Advantage Series meetings. Let me know if you'd like a hard copy!

Iowa Farmland Value Report released

In December, ISU released the most recent Iowa Land Value survey results. The average this year showed a 2.3% average increase in land values across Iowa, only the second value increase in the last six years. Details for this report, including county averages, can be found here.  

Don’t forget about the ISU Ag Decision Maker web site which has a lot of great farm management related information!

Copyright © 2019 Iowa State University | Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Policies

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach does not discriminate on the basis of age, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, national origin, pregnancy, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or status as a U.S. veteran. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Inquiries regarding non-discrimination policies may be directed to the Diversity Officer, 2150 Beardshear Hall, 515 Morrill Road, Ames, Iowa 50011, 515-294-1482, All other inquiries may be directed to 800-262-3804.

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