Iowa Youth Crop Scouting Competition registration open

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
Farm Forum

AMES, Iowa – The annual Iowa Youth Crop Scouting Competition will take place on July 30 at the Field Extension Education Laboratory in Boone at 1928 240th St. The event is presented by the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Integrated Pest Management program.

Middle school and high school students (those completing grades 7-12) from Iowa are invited to put their crop scouting skills to the test, competing against other Iowa youth teams from across the state. The goal of this annual event is to raise awareness and adoption of IPM principles, concepts and techniques in Iowa, and to provide an opportunity for Iowa youth to learn IPM basics through hands-on learning and teamwork.

Youth teams’ pest and crop management knowledge will be tested through topic-specific field stations and via a written exam. Several field stations will be run by ISU Extension and Outreach faculty and staff, giving students the opportunity to work next to and learn from Iowa State experts. Potential topics will include crop diseases, insects, plant disorders, weed identification, herbicide injury, crop growth stages, degree day computation, and sprayer calibration and sprayer issues.

“This is the 10th year of the competition and every year youth and coaches compliment the amount of learning that occurs, the professional skills youth develop and the fun they have,” said Maya Hayslett, crop science youth education specialist for Iowa State University, and program coordinator for the Iowa Youth Crops Scouting Competition. “No matter the teams’ level of expertise, they can expect to learn, have fun and meet new people. We expect to be able to hold an in-person competition. If state guidelines for COVID-19 do not allow in-person meetings by July 30, we will provide a platform to participate in an interactive distance competition.”

The top four teams, based on points accrued from the field stations and exam, are eligible to win cash prizes. ISU Extension and Outreach has various resources such as field guides, publications and presentations to help each team prepare for the event. For more information on where to obtain these materials, visit

For more information, resources and to register, visit

The event is sponsored by Iowa 4-H Youth Development, Corteva, Iowa Soybean Association, Iowa Independent Crop Consultants Association, Iowa Soybean Research Center, Iowa Certified Crop Advisors and Environmental Tillage Systems.

For more information, please contact Maya Hayslett at