Stink bugs damage soybeans

By Deborah Reinhart Brown - Ag Update

We’re hearing about deformed and discolored beans during harvest this year, probably caused by stink bug damage. Moderate damage can include noticeable shriveling and slight discoloration and deformation of seeds. Severe injury from stink bugs results in small, shriveled and discolored seeds.

Stink bugs are scoutable and treatable before damage occurs, too late for this year, but doable for next growing season. A quick guide to Ohio stink bugs and their management can be found at And there’s a new fact sheet on “How to ID Stink Bugs.” This gives an identification guide to five common stink bug species and scouting and management tips for soybean growers. It’s free to download at Besides being a soybean pest, stink bugs invade people’s homes in fall, so the rest of you might be interested, too!

The Shelby County Forestry Field Day will be Oct. 21, from 1 to 4 p.m. This event provides the opportunity to hike woodland trails, see a portable sawmill in operation, a visit with Smokey Bear, learn about habitat improvement from a Pheasants Forever wildlife biologist and more. There will be a pollinator and honey bee display and a rope-making demonstration. Kids can even enjoy the day with woodland crafts and activities and a candy scramble at 2:15 p.m. Hot dogs, apples and beverages are also a part of this fun activity!

An ODNR forester will be onsite to answer questions about timber management, invasive insects and tree identification. This event will be at the Denny Ziegenbusch farm at 5582 state Rout 705, east of Fort Loramie. For more information, you can visit

Just a quick reminder that the Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative is conducting its annual milkweed pod collection through Oct. 30. Shelby County SWCD is an official collection site. I’ve noticed that the seed pods are ready in my area: dry and gray or brown in color; center seam popping with gentle pressure. Be sure to put them in paper bags and write the date and county where they were collected on the bag.

Just a “heads up” for those of you who prepare taxes: The 55th annual OSU Income Tax Schools for Professionals will be at the Old Barn Outback in Lima, Nov. 15 and 16. If you are a farmer who does his own taxes or someone representing farmers or rural landowners, there is a five-hour Agricultural and Natural Resources Income Tax Issues Webinar, Monday, Dec. 17, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. You can participate from home or join a group at either the Auglaize County, Putnam County, or the Miami County OSU Extension office. More information and registration links for both of these events can be found at

We are preparing for a Master Gardener training class for next spring: Thursdays, Feb. 28 through May 2, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Contact our office for more information.

Well, I’m back to work full time. And my calendar is filling fast! I added at least four to five more commitments to the next two weeks, just last Wednesday! But, that’s OK: While you’re out in the fields, trying to get harvest done, we’re starting what I call our “In-Service Season.” Yep, this is where we get our updates as we prepare for “Meeting Season.” That, too, will be here before we know it!!

Pastures have stayed pretty nice this year with all the rain! It’s nice to see green grass growing! James didn’t have to use “extra fields” to keep the steers full. Of course, that rain has kept the lawns growing, too … which means regular mowing!!

By Deborah Reinhart Brown

Ag Update

The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at

The writer can be reached at the OSU Extension office (937-498-7239) or by email at