seal  Purdue News

August 22, 2003

Purdue field guide leaps off printed page, onto CD

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A popular Purdue University crop handbook is more user-friendly than ever. For the first time since its 1986 debut, the "Corn and Soybean Field Guide" also is available on a computer CD-ROM.

The "Corn and Soybean CD Field Guide" boasts about twice the information as its pocket-sized paper cousin, said Corey Gerber, director of Purdue's Crop Diagnostic Training and Research Center and field guide project coordinator.

"The CD-ROM contains all the information in the pocket field guide, plus referenced publications and Web sites, larger photos and graphics, search functions, and helpful calculation tools," Gerber said.

More than 15 Extension publications on corn and soybean issues are on the CD, Gerber said.

The CD field guide sells for $15 and is available through Purdue's Media Distribution Center. The paper version is $5.

To order either the CD (Extension catalog item CD-ID-179) or book (Extension publication ID 179), call Purdue's toll-free Extension hotline at (888) 398-4636 (EXT-INFO) and ask for the Media Distribution Center. An order form for the CD can be downloaded online. An order form for the paper edition can be downloaded .

Visitors to the Farm Progress Show on Sept. 23-25 in Vermilion County, Ill., can purchase the CD at the Purdue Extension exhibit. Gerber also plans to sell the CD at the National Farm Machinery Show, Feb. 11-14, in Louisville, Ky.

Purdue's field guide annually ranks among its most sought-after Extension publications. In 2002, about 40,000 copies were distributed in the United States and abroad.

"The 'Corn and Soybean Pocket Field Guide' has been a very popular publication that was first introduced by the Purdue Crop Diagnostic Training and Research Center 18 years ago," Gerber said. "This resource deals with many aspects of corn and soybean management, including insect, disease and weed identification; insecticide, herbicide and fungicide recommendations; fertility; and growth staging of corn and soybean plants."

Among the field guide features are color photos of corn and soybean insects, weeds and plant disease symptoms; articles on such topics as growing degree days and diagnosing soil compaction; plant nutrient and herbicide rate tables; and planter calibration recommendations.

Around a dozen Extension specialists in Purdue's School of Agriculture provided content and/or photographs for the 2003 field guide, representing the departments of Agronomy, Botany and Plant Pathology, and Entomology. The U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services also contributed.

Writer: Steve Leer, (765) 494-8415,

Source: Corey Gerber, (765) 496-3755,

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722; Beth Forbes,;

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