Blackford, Beaver Nab Week One Softball Honors

first_imgFRISCO, Texas – Southeastern Louisiana’s Madisen Blackford is the Southland Conference Softball Hitter of the week, while Central Arkansas’ Kayla Beaver is the Pitcher of the Week, the league announced Tuesday.The Lady Lions opened up their season with a perfect 5-0 record and the tournament title at the 2020 Lion Classic in Hammond, La., over the weekend. Blackford was instrumental in SLU’s flawless start, racking up seven RBI, five runs and seven hits on 13 at-bats. The junior also secured a .538 batting average and a .556 on-base percentage to go along with the game-winning RBI single over UT Martin on Saturday.Beaver opened up her collegiate career in impressive fashion for the Bears (3-3) over the weekend, stamping a 2-0 record in the circle with a pair of complete-game performances. The freshman pitched five innings on Saturday against Jackson State, striking out five batters en route to a no-hitter and an 8-0 win. She then followed suit with seven more innings against Louisiana Tech on Sunday, leading UCA to a 3-0 shutout victory.Softball Hitter of the Week – Madisen Blackford, Southeastern Louisiana – Jr. – OF/C/1B – Des Moines, IowaBlackford led Southeastern Louisiana with a .538 batting average (7-of-13), two triples and seven RBI on a 5-0 opening weekend for the Lady Lions. The preseason first team All-Southland performer singled home the game-winning run in a 6-5 extra-inning victory over UT Martin. Honorable Mention: Blair Clayton, Abilene Christian; Heidi Jaquez, Houston Baptist; Brenique Wright, McNeese; E.C. Delafield, Northwestern State; Megan McDonald, Sam Houston State.Softball Pitcher of the Week – Kayla Beaver, Central Arkansas – Fr. – Jackson, Tenn.Beaver became just the second UCA pitcher to throw a no-hitter in her pitching debut over the weekend, an 8-0 victory over Jackson State on Saturday. She opened her weekend with five strikeouts in five innings of work over Jackson State before notching a second complete-game shutout over Louisiana Tech on Sunday. In the 3-0 victory over LA Tech, she retired 13-straight hitters and concluded the contest with five strikeouts. The freshman did not walk a single batter in either of her appearances.Honorable Mention: Madison Cotton, Houston Baptist; Caroline Settle, McNeese; MC Comeaux, Southeastern Louisiana; Ashley Kriesel, Stephen F. Austin.Southland weekly award winners are nominated and voted upon by each school’s sports information director. Voting for one’s own athlete is not permitted. To earn honorable mention, a student-athlete must appear on at least 25 percent of ballots.last_img read more

Stakeholders, miners meet to settle differences

first_imgMarudi Mountain disputeMajor General (Retired) Joe Singh selected as MediatorFollowing the grievances of miners in the Marudi Mountain area against large-scale mining company Romanex Guyana Exploration Limited, the Natural Resources Ministry will facilitate mediation with the relevant stakeholders in Lethem, Region Nine (Upper Takatu-Upper Essequibo).The ministry disclosed on Thursday that key focus will be placed on “crafting workable solutions for parties in resolving mining, environmental and social issues.”To this end, a team from the Ministry of Natural Resources will visit Lethem between April 23 and 25 to “facilitate the mediation process”. This process is aimed at resolving the conflicts that have escalated between several miners in South Rupununi, Region Nine, and the mining company.The measure to select mediation follows a meeting where Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman met with stakeholders at Aishalton Village last month. At that meeting, concerns were raised which encompassed illegal mining, environmental, and social issues. After the discussions, the minister noted the seriousness of the problems but observed it was “not insurmountable” and as such a mediated solution was “the best means” of resolving the prevailing issues.After the parties agreed to the said approach, the ministry then appointed Major General (Retired) Joe Singh as Mediator. It was noted that the ministry has “full confidence that [Singh] possesses a wealth of knowledge, experience, and acumen to competently navigate the parties through the various issues as they find solutions to their contentious issues”.It was pointed out that the negotiations will include the Rupununi Miners Association, Guyana Women Miners Organisation, small miners from the Marudi Mountain area, representatives from Romanex Mining Company, and leaders from the neighbouring Amerindian communities of Aishalton, Awariwaunau, Karaudanawa, Achiwuib, Maruranau, and Shea.It was also explained that talks will begin on Saturday, April 23, and continue on Sunday 24. The supporting team will include technical officers from the ministry along with representatives from the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Guyana Women Miners Organisation.In November last year, miners of Marudi Mountain had staged a protest highlighting their threat of being evicted by the mining company. It was reported that over 300 miners had been calling on government to have their operations regularised so that their livelihoods would not be affected.last_img read more

Supreme Court Condemns Attack on Associate Justice

first_img– Advertisement – Associate Justice Sie-A-Nyene-Yuoh The Supreme Court of Liberia has condemned in the strongest terms, the attack on the home of Associate Justice Sie-A-Nyene Yuoh.The Supreme Court said on the evening of Sunday, November 5, about 9 pm, some unknown persons began throwing large stones into the compound of the Associate Justice Sie-A-Nyene Yuoh, intending to cause harm to persons living in the compound as well as cause damage to properties.The Court said as provided by law, no justice of the Supreme Court Bench or judge of subordinate courts, to include courts of records and those not of record, are to engage in political activities; as they are to remain neutral at all times so as to dispense fair and impartial justice should the case arise out of such activities.This provision of the law the court, it said, has upheld to the letter, not only for justices of the Supreme Court or judges of subordinate courts throughout the Republic but to the extent of the entire judiciary branch of Government, including judicial staff.As Liberia begins its transformation from one democratically elected government to another, after 12 years of peace and stability, the Supreme Court, through Chief Justice, Francis S. Korkpor, Sr., expressed its commitment to performing its constitutional responsibility in this regard by foregoing its normal term break and remaining open throughout the electioneering process until a President is duly elected and inaugurated.This, the court said, is to avail itself to all persons or parties participating in the elections to include the National Elections Commission.Accordingly, the Supreme Court again emphasized that its adjudication of elections matters, and all other matters brought before it, is strictly based on a fair, honest and impartial interpretation of the constitution and statutes relevant to the matter being adjudicated as is humanly possible.Cognizant of the fact that its opinions or rulings on a particular matter may or may not appease a particular party, the Supreme Court said it will never and can never adjudicate a matter brought before it on the sentiments, desires, whims or caprices of the Liberian Constitution and the relevant statutes controlling it.Therefore, the court said it cannot and will not be coerced or intimidated to render a decision in a matter brought before it based on the sentiments of the parties or the public as such will defeat the tenets of justice and erode the very foundation of our democracy. The Supreme Court, therefore, called on all to guide and protect the rule of law and the fundamental rights of all living within Liberia.The court commended the leadership, men, and women of the Liberia National Police for swift response to the attack on the home of Madam Justice Yuoh and trusts that the lives and properties of all Liberians will be continuously protected.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

ACCC to reopen by May

first_imgThe Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC) will once again open its doors to host events after undergoing rehabilitation works for the past two years.The Conference Centre, which would host events like international summits, regional conferences, award ceremonies and graduations, had been showing signs of deterioration. It was reported that staff members had noticed cracks in the ceiling, uneven flooring, broken tiles and issues with the underground insulation system. As such, the facility was closed in December of 2016 with the safety of staff and patrons in mind.Public Telecommunications Minister Cathy Hughes explained the need for works was timely since it coincided with the due date for renovations that was agreed upon before the building’s construction. “An agreement was signed between the Guyana Government and the People’s Republic of China, one of the stipulations in the agreement was that the Chinese contractor that constructed the Centre would have to carry out repairs and maintenance after 10 years of use,” Hughes stated.When questioned about Guyana’s financial obligation for the ongoing works, Minister Hughes explained that the initial project and subsequent rehabilitation were the financial responsibility of the Chinese Government and the Chinese company that constructed the building.She said, “The first time this building was constructed, [it] was completely funded by the Chinese Government, and I want you to know that the complete rehabilitation project was once again funded by the Chinese Government.”The conference facility has not only been rehabilitated, but would also see a number of improvements and technological upgrades. “The main conference hall will be equipped with a digital conference system that can accommodate three languages spoken simultaneously, 372 new theatre chairs, video matrix switcher, LED screens and overhead projectors,” ACCC General Manager Nancomar Ramdial said.The much-anticipated completion is scheduled for May 27, 2018. The elated General Manager noted that major companies have already expressed interest in utilising the facilities as early as June. “The final date for completion of all works is May 27, right on the 18-month schedule and the Centre already has bookings from June of this year to the first quarter of 2019,” Ramdial disclosed.The newly-renovated Centre boasts a main conference hall, eastern and western conference rooms- which can be divided into smaller rooms, business centre, conference secretariat, computer lab, first aid clinic, dining hall and kitchen.What was initially named the Guyana International Conference Centre was unveiled on February 16, 2006 and saw 13 conferences in its first year. That number grew to 114 by 2016. The facility was later renamed the Arthur Chung Conference Centre in 2015, to honour the legacy of Guyana’s first President, Arthur Chung, who served from 1970 to 1980.last_img read more

Public Health Minister unaware of overseas retreat

first_imgGPHC paediatric team trip…says probe into deaths of 3 children completeMinister within the Public Health Ministry, Dr Karen Cummings on Saturday told Guyana Times that she is unaware of the overseas retreat being planned by the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) for its paediatric team.The Chief Executive Officer of the Hospital, Brigadier (Ret’d) George Lewis, when contacted for clarification said he wishes not to comment on the matter.Nonetheless, Dr Cummings said she feels the retreat may be beneficial to the staffers. Asked if she believes that the retreat is timely, in light of the recent deaths within the department, she said, “retreats are always good. It’s a way to look back at what has happened, where you are now and where you are going.If persons are going I would suspect that assistance will be put in place to manage and to (ensure) efficiency”.Junior Public Health Minister, Dr Karen CummingsQuestioned on the progress of the investigations into the deaths of the three children –Sharezer Mendonca, Roshani Seegobin and Curwayne Edwards – who died at the institution following pre-chemotherapy treatment, the Minister said that the probe has concluded and she is awaiting the final report, which will soon be made public.Efforts made to contact the senior Public Health Minister, Volda Lawrence, for a comment on the overseas retreat proved futile.The retreat for the hospital’s paediatric team comes at a time when much tension is still in the air, as a result of the suspicious deaths of six-year-old Sharezer Mendonca, three-year-old Roshani Seegobin and Curwayne Edwards. The planned trip was confirmed to this publication on Friday by a doctor.According to the doctor, this is not the first time that the team is going on one of these trips, adding that they usually have such activities more than twice a year.This newspaper was told that the team is expected to leave Guyana on March 2, 2019, to facilitate their “weekend retreat” in neighbouring Suriname.A letter addressed to Dr Rambarran which was seen by this publication states that that the Paediatric Surgery Department has given up its operating day on Monday, March 4, 2019, to the transplant team. This, according to the letter, is to facilitate the department’s retreat, beginning on March 2 and ending on March 4.“We are planning on going to Suriname. In preparation, permission was sought and obtained from DMPS (Director of Medical and Professional Services) and PSM (Department of Public Service) for the relevant team members to be allowed to make the trip,” the letter read.It was explained that health practitioners on the trip would be funding themselves, while the department will be monitored by other staffers during their trip.last_img read more

Pogba wants Mourinho to make him feel valued again

first_img0Shares0000Paul Pogba (centre) wants to feel valued again by Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho (left). Photo/DAILY MAILLONDON, United Kingdom, Feb 23 – Paul Pogba wants more support from Jose Mourinho to help him through the most difficult spell of his Manchester United career.United’s record Sh12.6bn (£89million) signing has fallen out of favour and was left on the bench when Mourinho selected Scott McTominay in midfield for the 0-0 draw with Sevilla in Spain on Wednesday night. READ: Pogba wants Jose Mourinho to make him feel valued again… but United star’s camp have begun sounding out Europe’s top clubs over a possible summer transferIt is understood the 24-year-old Frenchman believes he has been harshly treated by Mourinho and wants to feel valued again.Pogba’s camp have even begun sounding out Europe’s top clubs to see if there could be a buyer for the unhappy star this summer.United would strenuously oppose any attempt by Pogba to leave only 19 months after he returned to the club from Juventus for a then world-record fee.Paul Pogba (middle) was back on good form at Manchester United training on TuesdayThey do not want a repeat of the situation with Angel di Maria, who lasted just one season after signing from Real Madrid in a British record £59.7m deal before joining Paris Saint-Germain.However, it is a sign of Pogba’s frustration that his agent Mino Raiola has taken the first steps towards assessing other options.Pogba has previously demonstrated a readiness to walk away from United, having left to join Juventus in 2012.Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba took part in training ahead of Manchester United’s game against SevillaBut even if United were prepared to countenance selling a player who still has more than three years left on his contract, Raiola would have to find a club willing to pay a big transfer fee as well as his Sh28mn (£200,000)-a-week wage.Real Madrid were linked with Pogba when he returned to United from Italy in the summer of 2016 and are among a handful of clubs capable of affording him.However, they are understood to have made a priority of signing Chelsea duo Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois this summer, with goalkeeper David de Gea set to stay at United.Manchester United’s manager Jose Mourinho (L) talks with midfielder Paul Pogba on the sidelines in January 2018Mourinho recently dismissed speculation over Pogba’s future as ‘lies and bull***t’, and it is understood there is no appetite among the Old Trafford hierarchy to sell.The United manager is set to face more questions on Friday over Pogba’s prospects of returning to the starting line-up for the home Premier League clash against Chelsea on Sunday.-By DAILY MAIL-0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

USDA officials plan to speed up meat recalls

first_imgStill, “this agency is not completely satisfied with the time elapsed and the issuance of the recall,” he said. “We will be reviewing data related to this recall as well as our own protocol to determine how we might improve.” Richard Raymond, the department’s undersecretary for food safety, then added: “It’s a policy we will be changing here.” The department’s response comes after news reports about an Agriculture Department e-mail showing that the department knew Sept. 7 about possible contamination but waited 18 days before concluding that the Topps Meat Co. should issue a recall. The recall that began Sept. 25 was soon expanded to cover 21.7 million pounds of hamburger produced by Topps, based in Elizabeth, N.J. It’s the second-largest beef recall in U.S. history. A Florida teen was hospitalized with kidney failure in August, and the meat her family bought was tested by the USDA. WASHINGTON – The Agriculture Department will speed up warnings about contaminated meat in the future, officials said Thursday as they sought to quell criticism of an 18-day delay in seeking the recall of millions of pounds of tainted ground beef. Briefing reporters, department officials acknowledged that they knew as early as Sept. 7 that frozen hamburger patties could be contaminated after preliminary tests indicated the presence of E. coli bacteria strain O157:H7. They said it was impossible to seek a recall without conducting a more sophisticated test to confirm original results, but said they would re-evaluate what the USDA can do better to warn the public sooner. “Let me be clear from the beginning, at this point we weren’t able to take action based on the initial test,” said David Goldman, assistant administrator of the USDA’s Office of Public Health Science. The e-mail – from Kis Robertson, an employee of the USDA’s Food Safety Inspection Service – was provided by the teen’s family lawyer, Scott P. Schlesinger, on Thursday. Existence of the e-mail was reported Wednesday by the Chicago Tribune. “They should have recalled immediately. That’s not even a maybe,” Schlesinger said. Asked about the delay, Topps spokeswoman Michele Williams referred questions to the USDA. “We’ve been fully cooperating with their investigation and certainly taking their recommendations,” she said. In the news briefing, Agriculture Department officials said the Sept. 7 preliminary results yielded 13 negative samples and just one positive result. Subsequently, USDA scientists conducted a more sophisticated test, known as the Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis, that took an additional seven days due to some unexpected glitches. Those results became available Sept. 14, but the USDA did not act immediately because the suspected meat had been opened in the consumer’s home, raising the question of whether it had been contaminated there. As part of USDA policy, the department does not immediately seek a recall until it gets a second confirmation elsewhere, which it received days later when New York officials reported they had run their own tests on a separate suspected E coli case and found that the beef had tested positive. The USDA’s Raymond acknowledged that the department could have moved forward as soon as Sept. 14. He said the department in the future will seek a recall if officials have strong evidence of contamination, regardless of whether the tested meat had been opened in the home. “There’s always a possibility of contamination in the home rather than the place of manufacture, but it’s unlikely,” Raymond said. As of noon Wednesday, 29 people in eight states had E. coli infections matching the strain found in the Topps patties, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. None has died. The first illness began July 5, and the last began Sept. 11, the CDC said. The Agriculture Department is investigating in an attempt to find the source of the E. coli strain, which is harbored in the intestines of healthy cattle. The CDC reported these states and numbers of cases: Connecticut, 2; Florida, 1; Indiana, 1; Maine, 1; New Jersey, 6; New York, 9; Ohio, 1; and Pennsylvania, 8. Privately held Topps, which is believed to be the leading U.S. maker of frozen hamburger patties, said it sells its products to supermarkets and institutions such as schools, hospitals, restaurants and hotels.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more


first_imgMajella on The Late Late Show – donegaldaily.comMAJELLA O’Donnell has spoken of her battle with cancer – and told other people getting the illness: “You can fight back.”The brave wife of singer Daniel also choked back tears on the Late Late Show on RTE1 as she spoke of how she fought cancer as her father died.And she also revealed that she had told Daniel to continue his work because she wanted him to do it – even though he wanted to stay with her. Majella was speaking to Ryan Tubridy just days after having a double mastectomy.“It’s not very nice but it’s doable,” she said of her battle with cancer.“When you hear the word ‘cancer’ it doesn’t mean it’s the end. I’m here now seven months later and I’m cured.”She revealed that Daniel is set to quit the music industry for at least 18 months so that the couple can spend time together. Majella said it had been “a huge decision for him” and went on: “We might do a  long cruise – it is going to be amazing, not thinking about ticket sales, or CDs or the next concert.”She spoke lovingly of the Kincasslagh man saying he had “cemented himself as my soulmate” over the past year.And she said she wanted to make it clear that it was her decision that Daniel continued his UK tour while she continued chemotherapy.“Even some of my friends were saying that was wrong but I said ‘you don’t understand’ because this was my decision. You don’t understand that this is what I want.“It did look bad on him and if it was down to him he’d have been there but that is not what I wanted. I want him now that I’m well again.” Majella said Daniel’s career break would be fun.She also discussed getting her hair shaved off on the Late Late Show last year – with Ryan admitting that even RTE had doubts about doing it.“It could could have backfired,” admitted Majella.“Maybe people wouldn’t like it.” However it had worked – and €600,000 had been raised for the Irish Cancer Society.And Majella revealed that an incredible 623,000 people had read a ‘thank you’ comment she had left on Daniel’s Facebook page on Tuesday.She finished her interview by speaking into the camera to warn people about cancer.“Get to know your body, get to know changes – men and women – it doesn’t mean it is an absolute catastrophe – don’t disregard it, go and check it out. The earlier you find it the better it is. I’m here now and I’m cured,” she said.MAJELLA: “WHEN YOU HEAR THE WORD ‘CANCER’ IT DOESN’T MEAN IT’S THE END” was last modified: February 22nd, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:canccerdaniel o’donnellLate Late ShowMajellaO’Donnelllast_img read more


first_imgSt Eunan’s National School in Raphoe took part in the Rainbow Walks.With the Easter holidays now over, schools heading back into their last term have been urged to keep their rainbow walks in mind for Relay for Life – and to let the committee know what day they plan to hold them.Schools across the county last year made the Rainbow Relay one of the big successes of Relay for Life, Donegal, helping to raise awareness of cancer across the county.“The emphasis on these walks is not on fundraising, but on education and awareness and hopefully we will gets of schools taking part once again this year,” said Liam Porter, Relay for Life Schools coordinator. He added: “We know that schools are really busy and that’s why we have left it to them to organise the walk any day that suits them. That said, we’d love to know what days schools are planning so we can get along to some of the walks.”The Rainbow Relay sees students and teachers dress up in bright colours before taking part in a walk that will help raise awareness of all types of cancer.“Primary and secondary schools across Donegal took part in this last year and it was a fantastic success and hopefully it will be an even bigger success this time around. Secondary schools who don’t have a team entered could still perhaps do the walk as a way of getting involved,” Liam added.Deadline extended The Rainbow Relay is just one of the ways schools can take part this year with poetry and song contests also included for students, and the deadline for entering those contests has been extended, Liam revealed.“We are really excited about the standard of the fantastic entries we have already received for the contests, but because our closing deadline fell during the school holidays we have extended the deadline for entries for both the song and poetry contests now to 12 noon on Friday May 2nd.”Liam added that full details of how schools can get involved are available on the Relay for Life blog page – where educational resources are also available to download.Schools can also get in touch with Liam by sending a text to 0862657758 or an e.mail to DEADLINE EXTENDED AS DONEGAL SCHOOLS URGED TO REMEMBER RAINBOW RELAY was last modified: April 27th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegalRainbow WalksRelay for Lifelast_img read more

Maximizing early season germination and emergence

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Reid Abbott, Field Agronomy Manager for AgroLiquidToday, in America’s agriculture industry, we look to push the limits on every input we can to maximize the return on investment and simplify our operations. The fact is there is simply not enough margin in a crop or hours in a season to do much less. However, there are costly consequences associated with running that close to 100% capacity. Figuratively speaking, if the train begins to derail, you could spend the rest of the year trying to get everything back on track. The adoption of reduced tillage farming and early planting are just a few reasons today’s hybrids are faced with challenging conditions. Although, if managed correctly, these practices can be implemented without impacting final yields and thus, increase the overall efficiency of a grower’s operation. Let’s discuss some of the causes of germination and emergence issues, and management tips that can improve your planting methods this year.1  Soil Temperature — Low soil temperature is one of the main reasons we see delayed emergence in our crops. Just like any other living organism, plants have ideal temperature ranges in which they exist and grow. If those minimums are not met, cell growth and division will not proceed, which causes germination and emergence to be prolonged.2  Soil Moisture — Similar to soil temperature, plants require an ideal range of moisture levels in order to germinate and grow effectively. If the soil is too dry, the seed will remain inert and not swell or germinate. If it’s too wet, the roots and shoots may not get enough oxygen for their growth and metabolism.3  Seed-to-Soil Contact — In order for a seed to sprout and begin its life cycle, it must have access to everything it needs. For this reason, it is crucial for the seed to maximize its contact with the surrounding soil so that nutrients and moisture can be transferred through the seed coat and into the young embryo.4  Soil-borne Pests — Insects and diseases have the potential to delay or terminate germinating crops. While seed treatments have been developed for many crops to help combat some of these pests, but in other cases pest pressures can be high enough to cause significant losses or delays.5  Uneven planting depth — Proper planting depth is essential to starting a crop off on the right foot. A seed that is too deep has to utilize all of its kernel energy to reach the surface and is prone to falling prey to adverse conditions from its extra time in the soil. Too shallow, and a seed could become a victim of the soil drying out or inadequate establishment of its structural root system.6  High Rate/Improper Starter Fertilizer — Starter fertilizers can cause dramatic problems if one does not consider the sensitivity of the crop, the proximity to the seed, and the caustic potential of the products used.Now that we are familiar with some of the causes of seedling germination and emergence issues, let’s take a look at some ways we can manage our planting operation to reduce the risk of these early season problems.1  Residue management — Regardless of your stance on tillage, we are all interested in the proper dispersal and breakdown of residue from a previous year’s crop. Creating a suitable seedbed begins at harvest the previous year. Evenly chopping and spreading stalks and properly setting planter row cleaners will ensure proper decomposition and management of residue in the seed row.2  Variety selection — If you are consistently the first one in the county to start planting, consider choosing varieties that are more suited to hearty early season characteristics. Cold germination scores, emergence and early season vigor ratings, and disease and insect resistance are all features that a grower should consider when selecting a variety that will be going out first on the farm.3  Planter settings — As simple as it seems, make sure that the planter is level both front to back and side-to-side. This will ensure that mechanical operations are functioning correctly.4  Seek advice from the soil — In the past, calendar dates were used to determine many farming operations. Today, most growers are moving away from that notion and relying on the field conditions to advise them on planting times. If the field is too wet, too dry, or too cold, it is best to not test the limits of seed viability and put the whole crop at risk.5  Scout/treat field for weeds and pests — Early in their life cycle, crops are susceptible to being outgrown by weeds and attacked by insects and disease. Discovering and subsequently clearing a field of these nuisances can lead to a more energetic emergence and early growth of a crop.6  Manage for compaction — Highly compacted areas in a field generally produce stunted, nutrient deficient plants due to the roots being unable to penetrate the high bulk density soil. Limiting traffic to specific areas using GPS and reducing the time spent in the field during wet conditions can lessen the number of acres where these conditions persist. Also, utilizing deep tillage and a variety of cover crops can go a long way to improve ground that has been overly compacted.7  Soil testing — Soil testing is the key to determining what the needs of the crop are so that nothing is lacking from the time the planter runs through the field. It is also a cheap and effective way to save money on fertilizer inputs if it is determined that the soil already meets the demands of the intended crop.8  Planter-time/starter fertilizer — As explained in the earlier section, planter-time or starter fertilizer can be risky depending on how and what you apply. However, because soils early in the season tend to be cold, nutrients tend to not be as readily available and root growth proceeds slowly. To help relieve these issues, a grower can utilize products that are specifically designed for in-furrow placement. Another tool a grower can use to minimize risk is to limit the fertilizer’s proximity to the seed so that the soil can act as a buffer to make the application less precarious. Y-knot splitters, 2X2, and over the row surface bands can all achieve that small separation while still providing the necessary nutrients early in the season.Sometimes, it seems like a monumental task when faced with planting hundreds or even thousands of acres in a finite time span. However, planning ahead and careful management of each input will yield clean, straight rows and a happy harvest.last_img read more