Just before planting, successful farmers across the Corn Belt work hard to ensure a healthy, high-yielding crop at the end of the season. They do this by carefully planning their approach and considering six key factors that will help them avoid errors in spring planting, giving their corn plants a greater chance to prosper once seeds are in the ground.
So what are these keys? The crop protection team at Arysta LifeScience compiled these thoughts toward corn-planting success:
- Don’t plant early “just because.” – A recent article from Successful Farming featured information that Corn Belt growers should consider before hitting the fields early, including the chance for additional spring snowfalls, daytime temperatures below 60 degrees and the likelihood of springtime storms with high winds.
- Don’t overwork your wet soil. – According to Peter Thomison, an Ohio State University Extension agronomist, corn growers should avoid working with wet soil and reduce secondary tillage passes that may cause shallow compaction. Deeper tillage is more appropriate during the late summer months, only after compacted zones are identified.
- Don’t forget to adjust seed depth according to soil conditions. – Thomison reminds corn growers that seed should be planted between 1.5 and 2 inches deep. This gives seeds protection against spring frosts while also allowing for ample root development.
- Don’t plant all one type of hybrid. – Plant a mix of early, mid- and full-season hybrids across fields, says Thomison. The combination helps reduce the harmful effects of diseases in corn fields as well as environmental stresses at various plant growth stages.
- Don’t take your eye off the skies. – Another Successful Farming article focuses on weather and anticipated trends throughout the Corn Belt for the 2017 growing season. Dale Mohler of Accuweather lends his expertise to assist growers on knowing when to anticipate a springtime cold snap as well as when to expect rising temperatures come May and June.
- Don’t overlook the importance of a crop protection plan. – In terms of a crop protection plan, corn growers often look to the past to then look forward. By evaluating past disease history, width of rows for proper airflow, weed pressure and insect invasions, Corn Belt farmers should have a good idea on how to plan for their upcoming chemical purchases. Additionally, chat with your local agronomist or extension agent as additional resources regarding what products you should consider as well as when to apply them.
Arysta LifeScience offers a full portfolio of seed treatments, fungicides, herbicides and insecticides that help corn growers produce healthy, high-yielding plants. For more information, visit www.arysta-na.com or contact your local Arysta LifeScience sales representative.