The Field Diagnostic Clinic will be offered on July 12, 2017 at the Field Extension Education Laboratory (FEEL) outside of Ames. Registration check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. and opening comments are at 8:55 a.m. The program concludes at 4:30 p.m.

The Field Diagnostic Clinic focuses on identifying common issues within crop fields. Extension specialists will discuss diagnostic methods and skills, management options and decision making for future crops. This program is meant for new crop advisors as well as individuals interested in a diagnostics refresher.

Continuing Education

This clinic qualifies for 6.5 continuing education credits for Iowa Certified Crop Advisers, subject to board approval.

What is FEEL?

FEEL is Iowa State University's 23-acre teaching and demonstration facility dedicated to providing a hands-on learning experience for crop production professionals. Demonstration plots are used to show management problems, solutions, and diagnostic challenges for corn and soybean production in Iowa. Modern, air conditioned classroom facilities support field demonstrations, all within walking distance.

Small classes offer each participant ample opportunity for discussion with instructors. Participants sharpen troubleshooting skills and evaluate management strategies through direct experience with actual crop problems.

Clinic attendees may purchase a copy of A Farmer's Guide to Soybean Diseases for $15, a 50% discount from the cover price. This 158-page color publication provides an overview of the soybean diseases that currently occur in the United states and Canada, with an emphasis on diagnosing diseases in the field. Information for each disease includes symptoms and signs, conditions that favor disease, similar looking diseases and disorders, and a review of basic management options. The book also contains a diagnostic key and disease distribution maps. Developed by Iowa State University in partnership with several other universities.

Clinic topics

The topics below are currently scheduled for the Field Diagnostic Clinic. Iowa State University reserves the right to adjust the program due to speaker availability and growing conditions.

Digging for issues in corn: what went wrong?
Mark Licht, Extension cropping systems specialist
We have many demonstration plots where we purposely make mistakes. Mark will teach about what to look for above and below ground when things seem off. He will also discuss what are the best options to consider or if the field should be left alone.

What went wrong these soybeans?
Mark Licht, Extension cropping systems specialist
Many are pushing soybean planting earlier in the season as well as reducing populations. Sometimes that leads to issues with frost damage, and reduced stands with cool and wet soils. Other issues may occur that lead to concerns about replanting. Mark will teach about replanting decisions as well as trying to add plants to a stand. 

Identifying issues with planter adjustments when planting into new situations
Mark Hanna, Extension agricultural engineer
Soil conditions at planting vary from day to day and field to field. Although it’s easy to set a planter and forget it, we need to make adjustments often and even within a field. Cover crops and new tillage systems require different changes and Mark will teach about what to be considering when doing so.

Nutrient deficiencies and fertilizer injuries
John Sawyer, Extension soil fertility specialist
John will be teaching how to identify common nutrient deficiency signs in corn and soybeans as well as showing fertilizer injury. What are the best options for remediating deficiencies? Will these issues cause yield loss?

Palmer amaranth: How is it different?
Bob Hartzler, Extension weed specialist
Palmer amaranth has been identified in conservation plantings as well as field crops at many locations across the state. Bob will teach how to identify Palmer amaranth based on vegetative and reproductive indicators as well as explain why we need to be concerned about Palmer amaranth. 

Herbicide injury identification
Clarke McGrath, On-Farm Research and Extension Coordinator, Iowa Soybean Research Center
Clarke will be sharing from his experience finding common herbicide misapplications. Causes range from herbicide carryover, drift, tank clean out and many more. He will teach how to identify these injury symptoms, as well as whether the plants may recover.

How to use A Farmer’s Guide to Soybean Diseases to identify soybean diseases
Daren Mueller, Extension crop plant pathologist
Soybean diseases can be difficult to diagnose. Many have similar symptoms, but Daren will share how he diagnoses them and how to use field guides as well as other tools to do so.

Corn diseases to be looking for and how to tell them apart
Alison Robertson, Extension crop plant pathologist
Alison will be discussing common corn diseases that are appearing or to expect based on the growing conditions this summer. Many of these diseases have similar symptoms and can be confusing. Alison will give key tips on what signs to look for to tell them apart.

What field crop insects have been sent into the Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic (PIDC)?
Laura Iles, director, Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic
The PIDC often receives samples of insect pests from across Iowa with identification requests. Learn what samples the Clinic is seeing this year and trends. Insect identification and diagnosis of insect injury will also be covered.

Registration Instructions

Registration is $125 and includes refreshments, lunch, course materials and publications.

Advance registration is required to attend this clinic. Registrations must be received by midnight, July 5, 2017. Space is limited for FEEL clinics. Registrations are accepted on a first-paid basis. If the clinic fills notice will be provided on this web page.

Cancelations requesting a refund must be received by midnight, July 10, 2017. Please call (515) 294-6429 or email to cancel a registration.

Registration may be completed online using VISA, MasterCard or Discover, or by mailing in the completed registration form with check payment. Phone registrations are not accepted.

Questions? For assistance with registration, receipts, billing, cancellation or questions on the status of your registration contact ANR Program Services at or (515) 294-6429.

For additional information regarding this and other FEEL programs please contact Warren Pierson, FEEL coordinator, at or (515) 509-8308.


Online registration has closed for this event. Registration deadline was midnight, July 10. Pre-registration is required to attend events at FEEL.

Directions and lodging

The clinic is held at the Field Extension Education Laboratory (FEEL), 1928 240th Street, Boone, Iowa. A printable copy of driving instructions, map and contact information is linked below.

Construction notice: The southbound I-35 exit to westbound Hwy 30 is closed this summer. Please follow the suggested detour using the 13th Street exit. More information from Iowa DOT.

Overnight accomodations, if needed, are the responsibility of the clinic attendee. A wide range of hotels are available in nearby Boone and Ames. For a complete listing visit the Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau link below.