Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest It’s a truism that rain is needed for yields. The bitter irony is that rain, and fog, and dew also drive the growth of the fungal diseases that limit our yields. Here are a few examples of what you can see from the road, and what it looks like up close. Inspect your fields before while they are still green so that you have a better understanding of what cost you yield so that you can make improvements for 2018.This duo of pictures is the Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) that is flaring up across IN/OH these days. The base of the plant showing discoloration of the woody tissue defines this disease. The initial infection got started back in the spring when the soil was wet. Soybean Cysts Nematodes feeding on the roots allows the fungus to enter the plant. Choose the right genetics with both SDS and SCN protection for 2018 and make sure your seed treatment is the best you can get.Here we have 2 pictures of Sclerotinia White Mold. This disease is often driven by heavy rains when the beans are beginning to flower. The fungus splashes up from the soil and infects the plant through the flowers. Note that in the picture to right you can actually see the white mold growing on the outside of the plant. If you look closely in the white mold you may see the black specks of hardened sclerotia. The sclerotia function as a long term “overwintering” structure for the disease. They can last in the soil for years so that when conditions are right they can infect your soybeans again. Rotating can help minimize this disease, as can reducing populations or moving to a wider row width.Frogeye Leaf Spot has also been prevalent this year. Varietal difference can be quite dramatic under heavy pressure. Good yield potential needs to be matched with key defensive traits. Some of our best soybeans come prepared with the Rcs3 gene for protection from Frogeye Leaf Spot. Additionally, growers who utilize a top-quality fungicide with both curative and preventative properties have been able to manage Frogeye quite well.The dark red lesion at the soil line is characteristic of Rhizoctonia root rot. Infection and seedling blight can occur early in the year. Rhizoctonia prefers warm and wet conditions, but can be problematic even in drier years. Infected, but surviving plants such as this one are more subject to yield and premature death later in the season.These 2 pictures illustrate Septoria Brown Spot. I took them at our Grow More Experience site this year. In the first picture everything looks just fine. But walking into the rows just a few steps shows what’s really going on inside the field – yield is being lost to disease. The field edge got enough wind and sun to dry out and limit disease. Inside the canopy, conditions were plenty moist for Septoria Brown Spot to infect the lower leaves and begin climbing up the plant. In the years before the advent of foliar fungicides I was not concerned about Septoria. In recent years I have come to appreciate just how damaging Septoria Brown Spot can be.So go ahead and get the combine prepped for harvest, but make a little time to inspect your fields to see what’s going on past the end rows.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Rod MauszyckiDTN Tax ColumnistI’m writing this column at 10 p.m. at night after a long week reviewing tax returns. Although tax reform has produced some mixed results, I’m still finding benefits for my clients.This year, people have been discussing solar energy — both purchasing solar panels and selling or leasing property to solar energy businesses. This got me thinking about the variety of credits available to taxpayers. There is a long list of credits, but here are a few that have sparked conversations.— Fuel credits are probably the most commonly used tax credits in farming. A farmer (or farm entity) can claim a fuel credit for certain nontaxable uses of fuel. If you purchase undyed diesel, kerosene or gas (which you paid tax on), you may be eligible for a fuel credit. If the fuel was used for farm purposes (including aviation), off-highway use (forklifts, skid steers) or boats for commercial fishing, the farmer may be eligible for the credit.— Although only extended through December of 2017, there was a 50-cent-per-gallon credit for vehicles operating on natural gas, liquefied hydrogen, propane, P-Series fuel or liquid fuel derived from coal. This applies to farms that use natural gas and propane forklifts and small motorized vehicles. Although the credit is not available for 2018 or 2019 at this time, you can always apply for the credit tax years it was.— A credit up to $7,500 is available for certain electric-powered cars. That amount is based off the size of the car and its battery. However, when a manufacturer produces the 200,000th plug-in vehicle, the credit is phased out.— For farms that are looking into solar or geothermal, the Business Energy Investment Tax Credit allows for a 30% credit in 2019, 26% credit in 2020, 22% credit in 2021 and 10% credit for 2022 and beyond. The credit applies to solar energy, fuel cells and micro turbines, and it increased the credit amount for fuel cells. It also established new credits for small wind-energy systems, geothermal heat pumps, and combined heat and power (CHP) systems. Most of these would also apply for accelerated depreciation.People often ask about individual tax credits not business related. And solar and geothermal systems are eligible for tax credits, much like the Business Energy Investment Tax Credit. There is one major difference: residential tax credits for solar and geothermal end Dec. 31, 2021. Also note that, unlike a business, a residential solar or geothermal system can’t be depreciated.— For those who hire employees, the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) was extended through 2019. If you hire someone in a target group (unemployed veterans, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients, Social Security Income recipients, ex-felons, residents in Empowerment Zones and Rural Renewal Counties, to name a few), you may be eligible to receive a tax credit equal to 25% or 20% of a new employee’s first-year wages. Consult your CPA to learn more about the WOTC credits before hiring an employee in one of these target groups.These are just some of the credits available to businesses and individuals. There are many others out there to consider, but before making a major purchase or hiring someone who might provide a tax benefit, consult your CPA to thoroughly talk through the implications.**Editor’s note: Tax Columnist Rod Mauszycki is a CPA and tax partner with the accounting firm of CliftonLarsonAllen, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org(AG/BAS)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.
An Army officer has been booked by the CBI in a case related to the alleged extra-judicial killings in Manipur which are being probed by the agency on the orders of the Supreme Court.This is the first such case in the 29 FIRs registered by the CBI. Major Vijay Singh Balhara, then attached with Assam Rifles, and seven other uniformed personnel have been named as accused in the case pertaining to the killing of a 12-year-old boy, Azad Khan, on March 4, 2009.This case was termed a fake encounter by a Supreme Court-appointed commission led by retired judge Santosh Hegde.Azad, a student of Class VII in Phoubakchao High School with no criminal antecedents, was allegedly picked up from his home before being killed, the commission noted.An FIR was registered nearly two months before the alleged encounter under sections of attempt to murder, Arms Act and other stringent charges. “According to the security forces’ evidence, the deceased was suspected to be a member of the People’s United Liberation Front,” the commission said, adding that PULF was not a banned organisation, according to the Manipur government.Parents witness to murderAzad’s family had alleged that about 30 security personnel came to their house, dragged the boy to a nearby field and beat him up severely. The parents, relatives and friends of Azad were locked in a room by the security forces but they saw through the window when he was shot by one of the commandos and a pistol was thrown near his body, the commission report stated. The police, meanwhile, had claimed that they got inputs of terrorists’ movement in Azad’s village. When they reached there, two persons fired at them from the bamboo groves. An encounter ensued after which the body of the boy was found and a 9-mm pistol was recovered, the police said.After hearing the deposition of Major Balhara, who led the operation, the commission noted that there was “serious contradiction” in his statement with that of the other witnesses. Relying on autopsy reports, witnesses’ statements and statements of police and Assam Rifles, the Hegde Commission submitted its report calling it a case of extra-judicial killing. In July last year, the Supreme Court had handed over 41 cases of fake encounters to the CBI in which 86 people were killed by security forces.