With crop prices at an all-time high, growers are spending the extra money and taking extra time late in the growing season and preparing for an efficient harvest to get maximum yield and profit from each crop.

The Tidewater Agriculture Research and Extension Center in Suffolk, Va. will host a pre-harvest field day, set to begin at 8 a.m. on Sept. 20. Many of the topics at the field day are geared toward helping growers get through the end of the season and get crops harvested as efficiently as possible.

The tour will be held at the Center’s research farm at 1045 Hare Road in Suffolk.  Specialists will display field research in progress and present valuable information for the 2012 harvest season and 2013 planting season. 

Included on the program will be an update on cotton defoliation strategies. With cotton acreage down this year, most growers are looking for increased yield to boost profitability of their cotton crop.

Late-season insect and disease control are essential for finishing out this year’s cotton crop, which has the potential of being one of top yielding crops in recent years in Virginia and northeastern North Carolina.

At the field day, Virginia Tech researchers will address some of the late-season challenges presented by insects and diseases to this year’s cotton crop.

See When can I quit spraying cotton?

Virginia Tech researchers will also provide some valuable insights on late-season management of soybeans. This year’s soybean crop will likely be the most valuable ever for Virginia growers and getting the most beans in the combine will be a economic boost for growers.

See Rationing the 2012 U.S. soybean crop.

Peanuts have made a bit of a comeback this year, and the 2012 crop looks like it has the potential to again average close to two tons per acre, or at least be comparable to last year’s record-setting yield. Late season production problems, including insect and disease management will be addressed at the field day.

Virginia private pesticide applicator certification credits will be available for participants. 

See $6 million peanut project aimed at improving yield, quality.

Lunch will be served after the tour and updates presented from USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) and Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS).

Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. with the tour starting promptly at 8:00 a.m.  Pre-registration by Sept. 7th is highly encouraged by contacting Gail White at the Tidewater AREC (757-657-6450, ext. 430 or guwhite@vt.edu).

rroberson@farmpress.com