WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Purdue Extension entomologists are warning Indiana farmers to scout their cornfields for signs that a pest called the armyworm is busy laying eggs in those fields.
The entomologists say cornfields that still have dense grassy vegetation, such as wheat, grass hay or grass cover crops are at highest risk from armyworm infestations. They say farmers who planted no-till corn into a grass cover crop, especially annual rye, need to scout their fields for signs of armyworm feeding.
The pest can cause devastating damage to cornfields. Corn damaged by armyworm feeding has a ragged appearance, with damage extending from the leaf margin toward the midrib.
With high enough armyworm populations, most of the plant can be eaten.