hands holding a telescope looking to the future

Much of the 2020 crop has just been harvested, but it's never too early to discuss crop diseases in the forecast for 2021. 

Did you come here thinking you might actually get some idea of what diseases will prove problematic next year? Good. Am I going to give you specific diseases for which to watch out? No. But I do want to tell you about a concept that will make disease prediction in 2021 easier: the plant disease triangle. 

mobile phone screen with an image of a corn and soybean field and a person in the field saying "hello"

The year 2020 has been out-of-the-ordinary, to say the least. Illinois Extension is utilizing web-based program delivery methods on a larger scale than ever, which leads us to one of the very few silver linings of our current circumstances: increased access to programs across the state. 

corn seedlings

The spring 2020 planting season season is moving right along, and as such, fields all over the state have great corn seedlings up and thriving. With the emergence of the new crop comes all of the concerns and worries that farmers must contend with throughout the growing season. Among those concerns should be corn nematodes. 

a dead soybean plant

It is no secret that things are... not normal right now in the world. It is also no secret that the agricultural clock does not stop because of a pandemic.  

That being said, we think it is important that you know that the University of Illinois Plant Clinic remains open! Yes, you read that correctly. The Plant Clinic is OPEN! As spring flowers being to pop, trees start sprouting leaves, and seeds are sown into the ground, you may still send plant, insect, and soil samples to the Plant Clinic.  

aerial view of a combine harvesting corn

Planting season is right around the corner! With any hope, things will go much smoother this year than last year (although that's not a very high bar to pass). 

Continue to keep an eye on the weather! This includes not only what is going on in your area, but also monitoring the snowpack and melt in the upper Midwest and into Canada. This can greatly influence the water table and planting in Illinois.