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Introduction: New year, new outlook

Welcome to our January issue.

December 17, 2007  By Ralph Pearce

Welcome to our January issue, the ‘Soybean Focus’ edition. Soybeans had an interesting growing season in 2007 and we say ‘interesting’ intentionally, in spite of the tough time the crop had in many regions. Aphids came early, bean leaf beetles were a sudden scourge, SCN travelled east and wound up near Belleville and to top things off, summer was so dry, it caused green stem problems at harvest.

Yet for all the frustration that could have been expressed, the one comment that stands out in retrospect comes from Albert Tenuta, OMAFRA’s field crops pathologist. When discussing the arrival of SCN east of Toronto, he made the
surprising summation that it was “a good news story.”

How could the arrival of one of soybeans worst enemies be a good news story? His answer was – and is – because it is manageable, as are most of the pest, disease and weed challenges facing growers.

In this day and age, it is all too easy to become frustrated and pessimistic, especially where conditions on the farm are concerned. The challenge is always to find the silver lining and in this case, Tenuta gets the nod for the ‘Glass is half to three-quarters full’ award for his outlook on soybeans’ disease situation.

There is Murphy’s Law which expects the worst, O’Reilly’s Law that says Murphy was an optimist and now there’s ‘Tenuta’s Twist’, where challenges in life can become opportunities.

And in other news…Top Crop Manager has launched an exciting new web site which features this complete issue on-line for readers who choose to register. Also, there’s a special invitation to enter our on-line contest for a chance to win some significant prizes (see the advertisements on page 27 in this issue and page 12 in the Enhanced Genetic Traits Supplement).

Ralph Pearce,
Field editor


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