Showing posts from June, 2023

Fuel Tax Credits Section 45Z

  The Biden Administration passed the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act and farmers may benefit from this legislation. Under section 45Z, the legislation provides a tax credit for the domestic production of clean transportation fuels, The 45Z tax credit applies to fuels produced after Dec. 31, 2024 and sold before Dec. 31, 2027. It includes $369 billion in spending and tax credits for climate and energy programs over 10 years. Instead of paying farmers to sequester soil carbon, this legislation pays farmers to reduce their carbon foot print by using sustainable fuel or producing sustainable fuel. The legislation extends the biodiesel and alternative fuel credits through December 31, 2024. It extends the $1.00/gallon Section 40A biodiesel and renewable diesel credit and the $1.00/gallon biodiesel mixture credit, which was due to expire after 2022. Several other alcohol, biodiesel, and alternative fuel credits were renewed including a $.50 alternative fuel credit. In most cases, the tax credi

Corn Nutrient Uptake

  Due to colder nigh time temperatures and a lack of moisture, most crops are running about 2-3 weeks behind their normal growth pattern. Early planted corn appears to be growing better due to deeper roots. Many soybean fields are still trying to germinate yet. As most farmers know, a little more rain could really help improve crop growth. Soils provide 13 of the 16 nutrients needed to produce grain. In addition, soil must release these nutrients quickly enough to meet daily high nutrient demands of the corn plant during the V6 to R1 growth stages. V6 refers to vegetative growth when the corn has 6 true leaves. R1 refers to the start of corn tasseling and pollination when corn is putting on grain. For corn, nutrient uptake is the greatest from about V6 to R1. During this time period, the corn is growing new plant tissue for roots, leaves, and stalks. The plant is determining corn yield by starting to grow a corn ear and it is creating pollen in the corn tassel to pollinate and fertiliz

Improving Soil Conditions

  Some cooler temperatures are coming and some rain has occurred. Most farmers are hoping for more rain to get their crops out of the ground and growing. One thing, where ever the soil had higher amounts of soil organic matter (SOM), the crops emerged and are growing much better. Every 1% SOM holds about 0.5 to 0.8 inches of rain, which helps crops germinate and grow until they get their roots established. Building SOM requires getting more roots in the soil. No- till and cover crops are two ways to build SOM and reduce adverse weather. As wheat harvest approaches, farmers may be considering double cropping soybeans. In a dry year, soybeans may not be the best option, but letting wheat stubble remain bare promotes weeds. Many cover crops can grow and thrive with little soil moisture including buckwheat, cowpeas for nitrogen, and teff (forage crop). Diverse cover crop mixtures help each germinate and get needed nutrients. Planting cover crops after wheat is a safer bet when moisture is

Handling Dry Conditions

  In 2023, Ohio experienced the 6th driest May since the 1930’s Dust Bowl. The combination of cool May weather and mostly dry soil conditions delayed crop germination and has reduced crop growing conditions. Crops are already struggling to grow. Several factors are contributing to this dilemma. First, the switch from a La Nina weather pattern in the Pacific Ocean to an El Nino usually means drier weather conditions in the Midwest. When La Nina’s are strong and long, you can expect a stronger El Nino pattern. El Nino’s may last 1-3 years on average. Most weather experts expected drier conditions in late summer and early fall, but dry weather came earlier than expected! Second, along with weather patterns, solar sunspot activity is at a higher intensity. Solar sunspots normally peak about every 11 years with a solar sunspot peak expected in 2025. The last few solar sunspot activity cycles have been mild to average, but the sunspot intensity is much higher this time around. There is a hig