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Landmark Heating and Cooling and Lennox Industries Team Up to Help a Neighbor

Landmark Heating and Cooling team members in Cottage Grove, WI, know that the frigid winter temperatures will be here soon. That’s exactly why they will be spending next Saturday morning installing a new furnace for helping a deserving Edgerton family. The recipients this year are the Gumbles. Teagan has health issues that are reactive to heat, cold, humidity, allergens and clean air so a program like Feel the Love can really make a difference in her quality of life.

For ten years the Landmark Heating and Cooling team has donated all labor and installation materials to install a brand new high-efficiency furnace, which is  generously donated by Lennox Industries, for a family whose existing unit is severely inefficient or unrepairable at no cost to the recipient.

The Wisconsin family was nominated and selected as part of the Feel the Love program, which asks members of the community to nominate people who are in need. Nominations for the program are accepted year-round, with recipients chosen based on specific criteria each September—before the temperatures start to drop.

“It’s such a rewarding program to be a part of,” says Tom Stangl, sales coordinator at Landmark Heating and Cooling, “There’s no better feeling than knowing that you’re bringing warmth and a sense of security to a well-deserving neighbor in your community. For me, it’s a great way to spend a Saturday.”

Posted in Energy & Retail, Landmark News

From the Field – Be Looking at Corn and Soybean Varieties

It is a good time to be looking at corn and soybean varieties. We need to look at varieties you want to keep on the farm and the ones you think have served their time. With many options for seed, best to talk to your Landmark agronomist so we can help find the best seed option for your fields.

In corn fields, now is a good time to be checking on your nitrogen programs’ performance especially on the earlier planted corn that is ahead. With the amount of rainfall that came in late summer, adjustments can be made for future years if you see there were corn fields that ran out of gas. Anthracnose in corn can come as early as emergence in corn and affect the foliage. Stalk rot in the fall is common for the disease. It will show very distinguished black narrow or oval blotches on the tissue rind. Anthracnose will over winter in residue and favors wet, warm cloudy conditions and low fertility areas. Overall yield loss to anthracnose results with a premature plant death, less grain fill, and weak stalks for lodging corn. Hybrid selection, cultural practices and fungicides will help control the corn crops’ health. We are seeing success with plant health on corn crops that had VT fungicide done. With the disease pressure and growing season we were given, necessary fungicide applied will reap the rewards.

Soybean fields are in the R5 to R6 stage with a few fields starting R7. Soybeans in between the R5 and R6 stage will attain maximum height, node count, leaf area and nitrogen fixation will reach peak and then drop rapidly. The demand for water and nutrients increases throughout the rapid seed filling period. This period beans acquire about half of their nitrogen fixation, phosphorous and potassium. Soybeans sudden death syndrome also known as SDS and brown stem rot have been the popular disease issues in our region’s fields. Brown stem rot can have close to the same foliar damage as SDS along with the same blue hue color fungal on the roots. To better differentiate the diseases look at and cut open the stems. Brown stem rot will be discolored starting at the soil line of the stem on up; SDS will have the outer layer of stem discolored in a brown or gray color. Seed treatments such as Illevo, Saltro and Clareva are showing good protection against SDS and can be ordered on the seed. Brown stem rot will be managed by effective crop rotation, selecting crop resistant varieties and residue management.

We still need to be scouting crops diligently in corn and beans to understand late season health and know what to expect come harvest. Everyone have a safe and productive week.

 

Mother nature has continued to challenge farmers moving into 2019 harvest. Corn silage harvest is only about 25% complete as rain continues to fall in our area. Recent samples on fields have been coming in at 65-70% moisture, so as soon as field conditions allow, choppers will once again be rolling. Early planted soybeans are rapidly approaching full maturity with the above average temperatures we have experience throughout September. These warmer temperatures will be crucial to finishing off a late planted corn crop moving into fall. Heat combined with more than adequate moisture has led to heavy disease pressure showing up in corn, with Northern Corn Leaf Blight and Gray Leaf Spot most prevalent in the area. The bright spot in all this is despite disease showing up, stalk quality has remained strong in majority of affected fields.

This week we began our aerial applications of cover crops, with rye being flown on to both corn and soybean fields. We will again be providing a variety of cover crop options this year; be sure to contact your local agronomist to determine which is the right fit for your operation.

As we inch closer to combines rolling through the fields do not forget about the importance of soil sampling. Soil sampling is a great way to determine the status of your soil and find out which nutrients you may be lacking going into the 2020 growing season. As always give your local agronomist a call with any questions you may have.

Have a safe harvest!

Posted in Agronomy, Blog

Grain Exchange – Upcoming Trade Talks Cause Market Shuffle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Markets continue to trade up and down with news about trade talks.  Soybeans were up yesterday with news China bought more beans and high-level talks could happen October 10th.  China is also still reporting new cases of the Africa Swine Flu.  So far this year, China has imported 40% more pork than last year.

Corn improved good/excellent rating by 2% to 57%.  So far, the US has harvested 7% vs 11% on 5-year average.  Markets are looking for a huge harvest week with the wet weather coming later this week.  Markets are also waiting on September 30th USDA stock report.  Currently USDA has carryout at 2.445 billion bushels.

Soybeans remained 54% good/excellent with 34% dropping leaves vs 59% on 5-year average.  The market is watching weather in South America as they start planting.  Mota Grosso is less than 1% planted and behind last year.  Northern Brazil has seen little rain in the last 10 days.  Markets are also watching to see if the US and Japan can finalize the trade deal prior to the self-imposed deadline.

Winter wheat is getting planted at a normal pace of 22% completed.  Spring wheat is slowly coming off and is 87% completed.  Egypt says they have enough wheat reserves to last four months.  Ethiopia tendered 200 tmt.  Last time Ethiopia tendered wheat was in May of this year.  Russia has harvested about 79% of their wheat crop.  Kazakhstan has cut production numbers to 18-18.5 mmt because of drought concerns.

With harvest coming, make sure to talk with us about options.  It never hurts to put offers in for anytime frame; that rally may come when you least expect it.  Start your marketing plans for 2020, as you start buying fall fertilizer and seed.  We are available and more than willing to help you plan.

Have a wonderful day!

Posted in Blog, Grain

Grain Exchange – Larger Than Expected Corn and Bean Exports

Corn and bean exports were larger than expected. Corn sales this week were at 1.56 million metric tons vs expected at 900k-1.3mmt. Mexico bought 1.164 mmt of the 1.56 and the next biggest destination was Costa Rica at 99k. Soybeans were exceptional at 1.728 mmt vs expected at 700k-1.1mmt. Top bean sales were to China at 593k tonnes and 584K tonnes to unknown. In other news, the Federal Reserve voted to cut interest rates ¼ point for second month in a row.

As harvest is starting, we are starting to hear yields. Corn in southwestern Indiana made 220 bushels per acre vs last year at 235, 130 acres on good soil. On sandy ground of 95 acres went 190bpa vs last year at 195bpa (being the best year ever). This was all planted on April 11, 2019. South of Decatur, IL on light ground that ran out of moisture 170bpa vs 241 last year. Another farm had hog manure and healthy-looking crop ran 188 bpa vs 250 last year. Morgan, IL (Scott county) 108-day corn planted April 12th ran 212 bpa with moisture 19%-20% on 43 acres. Other field in same area 50 acres ran 230 bpa. Both fields are yielding about the same as last year and is pleasantly surprising the producer. Corn continues to trade a small trading range as trade start to see yields come in and watch exports. Make sure to finish up selling old corn and offer corn out in spring 2020 and fall 2020. Cash corn for October/November 2020 is around $3.70. A great spot to start layering corn sales in.

Soybean yields in Coles county, IL, planted May 14th with 2.9 maturity, 200 acres are 51.15 bpa, about 20 bushels less than last year but better than producers expected. Waverly, IA is seeing 30 bpa vs last year at 60+ bpa. Producers walking bean fields are stating no blooming, no pod development and the crop shutting down. US and China negotiators are meeting in Washington today and tomorrow for the first time in two months. These meetings setting up for next month’s talks with highest-levels negotiators. The meetings are expected to have a heavy agricultural agenda.

USMCA is seeing some progress with US House members on both sides of the aisle saying Congress and the White House are talking. There needs to be more exchanges before it will come to vote on the House floor.

It is never too soon to start your grain marketing plan for 2020. We are available to help get plan started ahead of harvest. Agronomy has great options for taking advantage of fall fertilizer. Also look at our Verity financing options. Landmark wants to help you from soil health to grain marketing options and everything in between.

Have a great day!

~Melisa

 

Posted in Blog, Grain

From the Field

Traveling through northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin the signs of fall are showing.  Combines, grain carts and grain setups are being inspected to prepare for this year’s harvest. Chopping corn silage is ramping up in Illinois and starting in southern Wisconsin.  On a good note, speaking with those who have started; quality and tonnage have been very good. Mother nature has seemed to notice we’re trying to get something done and decided to start dumping large amounts of rain again slowing us down once again. We are in a definite need of a warmer drier pattern to help finish the crop. I have seen a handful of early planted soybean fields turning and could possibly be ready in a couple weeks. Unfortunately, that’s not a common sight in the countryside and most soybean fields need some time to finish out. Early planted, early RM corn varieties could start being harvested as soon as the last week of September. Like the soybeans the corn needs time also. I’ve checked corn anywhere from 1/4 milk line to almost black layered throughout my territory. We will need between 40 and 300 GDU’s to get us to maturity (30-35% moisture). It is safe to say that there will be some wet corn harvested this year.  Again, trying to find some positivity, overall plant health is good and yields could be good as well. Thank you for letting us be a part of your operation. As always if you have any questions or concerns reach out to your Landmark agronomist for help.

Have a safe and prosperous harvest.

 

As we are heading into the fall season, it’s a good time to check our crops while they are still showing life. It’s no use waiting too long because a lot of symptoms can be missed and nothing can be learned. We certainly had our fair share of challenges establishing and managing our crops in a timely fashion. The late plantings and less than ideal conditions brought a lot to see in the progress so scout all we can to see how our hybrids held up.

We are seeing a lot of rootworm issues in corn, so managing this costly pest is going to be more crucial than ever before. I received several calls asking about the high numbers of these green buggers,those are Northern Rootworm beetles and most likely the diapause. They will infest and lay eggs in corn fields and will weather through a soybean rotation only to hatch out the next year back to corn. Doing a corn and soybean rotation used to be somewhat effective to managing rootworm pressure in corn but the Northern Rootworm were able to adapt. Our best measure is scouting and using solid rootworm traits designed to handle the increasing problems. Keep in mind that root feeding will still happen in order for the trait to kill it’s predator but solid agronomics in choosing corn and management can minimize the costly damage. We were very successful in our aerial application timing of fungicide. The hybrids are responding well to this practice as satellite imagery showed dramatic images of treated and untreated checks. Over the years, VT fungicide has shown a much higher ROI to fungicide over a V5 application. The V5 application was desired primarily because the timing was better adhered to but our aerial program implemented this year was very successful.

Looking over our soybeans, we can see the Japanese Beetle was feasting too well but did not quite hit economic threshold. Scouting is always crucial to prevent surprises at harvest time. Pod counts look good and with the rainfall as of late are helping in good pod fill. The numbers look attractive but volume in beans themselves still add to our bottom line. Weed control is still top on our minds to put together a good plan for next year. We saw our fair of successes and (I know) failures. We are looking at chemical plans and always striving to get better. Two modes of action are showing promise so please reach out to your local agronomist to see what fits your operation the best.

Let’s have a safe harvest!

Posted in Agronomy, Blog

Grain Exchange – Energy Markets in the News

Markets are softer today with some turn around Tuesday action. Yesterday’s crop progress report showed better than expected numbers for corn. The USDA said that corn is still 55% Good/Excellent which is unchanged from last week. However, last year at this time we were at 68% G/E. US Soybeans are said to be 54% Good/Excellent, down just one percent from last week. The corn crop is said to be 68% dented,18% mature and 4% harvest. The US soybean crop has 95% setting pods and 15% dropping leaves.

 

Weather remains bearish for the markets as the 16 day forecast isn’t showing much for cold weather threats. The Midwest is predicted to see average rainfall for the next day days with above average temperatures.

 

Energy markets have been making the news recently. Trump is said to back a new plan that would boost biofuel quotas by 10% in 2020. This plan is aimed to compensate for refinery waivers and would increase quotas by an amount equal to the 3-year average of past waived volumes. This should give some boost to the ethanol markets. Crude oil markets have seen huge volatility so far this week with Saudi Arabia announcing that half of its oil output, which equal about 5% of total world output, was halted on Saturday due to a drone attack in its Abqaiq processing facility. This caused a huge jump in oil prices yesterday, followed by lower prices today after announcements today that Saudi Arabia oil outputs should be back to normal in 2-3 weeks.

 

Trade talks continue to say that China will source 3-5 mmt of US Soybeans, however Lighthizer hasn’t confirmed that early October talks will produce a deal. US Soy products are cheaper than South American soy at the moment, which should push China into making some purchases.

 

As we get closer to the 2019 harvest, now is a good time to look forward to 2020. Get your target prices in so that you can take advantage of any spikes in the market! Give us a call if we can help with any of your marketing needs!

 

Posted in Blog, Grain

Building Excitement in Evansville

COTTAGE GROVE, WI, September 17, 2019 – Landmark Services Cooperative is excited to announce it will break ground on its new 28,000 ton dry fertilizer building at 2:00p.m. Tuesday, September 24, 2019. The new building will be located at 750 South County Road M in Evansville. The project will start this fall with an anticipated completion of early summer 2020.

At the June board meeting, the agronomy senior management team presented the opportunity to build a 28,000 ton dry fertilizer plant in Evansville, which was unanimously approved by the board. This new expansion will bring additional dry fertilizer storage capacity, while improving customer service, operational efficiency, and speed of service for members. The increased capacity also means the cooperative will be able to take larger product positions and capture freight savings.

The new plant will allow faster loading, resulting in shorter wait times for the tender fleet and members getting direct loads. Loading time of tender trucks and semi-trucks will be under ten minutes versus 30 minutes in the past. Other key benefits for Landmark members include:

  • Blending 250 tons per hour.
  • Receiving product at 600 tons per hour.
  • Flexibility of fertilizer delivery to Landmark by rail or truck.
  • Cost savings related to insurance, utilities and repairs with older facilities.

“As our membership continues to grow, we remain focused on our ability to serve members’ operations of all sizes in the most timely and efficient manner,” said Landmark CEO & President Jim Dell. “Landmark is proud to be committed to our members’ current and future needs.”

For more information on Landmark Services Cooperative’s programs, contact Chrissy Long at chrissy.long@landmark.coop or 608-819-3126.

Landmark Services Cooperative is a member-owned cooperative dedicated to providing customers with the highest quality products and services. For 85+ years, Landmark has provided farm-related products and services to its more than 11,000 members in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois. Employing more than 300 full-time people and reaching sales in excess of $373 million, Landmark provides a customer service-oriented approach in the communities it serves. For more information, visit landmark.coop, or call 800-236-3276.

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Posted in Landmark News

Fall and Winter Calf Feeding and Management Tips

KEEPING HER WARM

The thermoneutral zone of a newborn calf is between 55-78° Fahrenheit. When the temperature drops below 55, a newborn calf is going to begin to experience some degree of cold stress. The first step in winter feeding is to create a comfortable environment.

  • BEDDING  Between week 1 and week 6 of life, a calf spends 73-81% of her time lying down. Due to the fact that she is spending close to ¾ of her time lying down, it is crucial that we provide her clean dry bedding. Keep in mind that the rate of heat transfer in wet bedding may be 3 to 10 times that of dry bedding. Ensure bedding is dry where calves are lying and supply straw allowing calves to nest. Check to make sure there is enough bedding underneath the calf so she is not losing heat through the ground.
  • CALF JACKETS  Putting a jacket on a calf can help decrease heat loss by up to 15%. With the combination of dry straw bedding and calf jackets we can reduce heat loss by up to 30%.
  • HOUSING  Whether calves are housed in a barn or outside we need to be sure they are well ventilated yet draft-free. You may need to close vents in hutches or raise curtains on condos to reduce draft. Ventilation in calf barns may need to be adjusted from what was working in the summer months to diminish drafts in the winter. Protect calves from lying against concrete walls which can absorb her heat.
  • NEWBORNS  Get newborn calves dried off quickly to prevent immediate cold stress. The use of a warming box or heat lamp can help (as long as they are kept clean). Give calves good quality colostrum quickly. Monitor temperature of the colostrum to ensure it is being fed at nothing below body temperature.
  • CHECK YOUR SYSTEM:
    • Go into a pen where you see a calf has been lying down.
    • Kneel down on one knee for at least a full minute.
    • If your knee gets warmer it is ok, if your knee gets colder the calf is losing heat down into the ground. In this case more bedding should be added.
    • Feel if there is any draft where you are kneeling.
    • Check to see how dry the bedding is in that exact spot where she has been lying.

FEEDING CALVES FOR WINTER ENERGY NEEDS

As the temperature drops our calves require more energy for maintenance. Unlike older calves who can just eat more grain, young pre-ruminant calves do not have that option. Calves under three weeks of age are particularly stressed because they do not have much energy stored (3-4% body fat) and are eating very little calf starter. For every 1 degree drop in temperature below 50 F, a calf requires one percent more energy. By the time the temperature reaches zero, a calf should receive 50 percent more energy (calories) just for maintenance.

So what are the options for cold weather feeding?

  • FEED LARGER VOLUMES OF THE SAME MIX
    • If you would like to stay with the same mix, you can feed larger volumes to increase the calf’s caloric intake.
    • Feed at least 3 quarts or 3 ½ quarts per feeding of milk or milk replacer at recommended solid levels.
    • This also allows calves to get more water, decreasing chances of winter dehydration.
  • ADD AN EXTRA FEEDING
    • If you have the ability, adding an extra feeding has proven to be very successful.
    • To save time, you can target younger calves (~three weeks and younger).
    • Make sure you time feeding accordingly and stick to a routine once you start.
  • INCREASE THE AMOUNT OF POWDER
    • You can increase the solid level to 15-18% solids.
    • Ensure you have free choice water available because calves may be thirsty due to the increased dry matter content.

When feeding calves in winter be very aware of the temperature at which you are feeding the milk. Milk or milk replacer should be fed at 100°F- 102°F. If it is any colder calves will have to use energy to bring milk back up to body temperature. Often calves fed last will get much colder milk than calves fed first; In this case you may have to adjust your mixing temperature a little higher.

Watch for winter dehydration. It is very important that you still feed free choice water to calves in the winter months. We all know that it is crucial for grain intakes, but it also helps prevent calves from getting dehydrated in the winter, especially if you increase solid content.

Posted in Animal Nutrition, Blog

Grain Exchange – Today is Another Report Day!

Today is another report day! The WADSE Report will be release at 11:00am. Professionals have been estimating a slight decrease in yield. Other than the minor change in yield thoughts are that it will not be a market mover report. There is always opportunity with a report. However, the bean market can not move more than $0.65 in one trading period and corn can not move more than $0.25. Knowing those limits, setting realistic offers is still extremely important.

Corn is trading slightly higher. There are many talks about ethanol slowing down, but we haven’t seen numbers to support this yet. Trump met with biofuel producers yesterday in hopes of boosting the biofuel industry in the future.

Soybeans are up 7-8 cents this morning. US weather forecast has been predicting the first frost to be a little earlier than normal. Trump and China are continuing discussions and Trump released the following tweet:

Wheat is trading even but at a much better price than a week ago as they wind down harvest.

Judy Uhlenhake with Landmark grain was nominated through the WI Farm Bureau to attend the Washington DC Fly. She will be sharing what farmers are doing and the effects of the Whitehouse in rural Wisconsin. We are excited to hear and share her experiences from her trip.

After the report there will be a text release through Landmark about the results. If you are not signed up reach out to your grain marketing specialist.

Have a great day!

Kasey Baker
608-819-3477
Kasey.Baker@landmark.coop

 

Posted in Blog, Grain