From the Rows - Jason Franck - Western Tour Day 3
Wonderful, we finally made it to Iowa!! Since I'm from IA, I was very curious to see how the home state was going to stack up. I felt heading out this morning that the tour officially started today, because of the unknown brewing in this state.
We traveled from Nebraska City to the north side of Omaha. I was impressed to see how consistent our yields were with the first three stops. I felt the soybean pods were trending a little lower from the start. As we moved up through the Denison area and into Ida County, the level of disease started to pick up in the corn. Mainly this consisted of common rust, gray leaf spot, and anthracnose stalk rot. Additionally, this is where I really noticed the maturity start to mimic day one, (far behind). As we spoke about with the trip on day one, the crop I saw today will also need six weeks if not more, to make the kind of crop we want. Continuing on, we wrapped around Cherokee and then made our way east on hwy 3 and north on 71. As we got on hwy 3 and hwy 71, the crop changed even more for me. As a road observer, it was noticeably getting more inconsistent and yellow. Similarly, when we took samples in the field I noticed how many of these fields have challenges with emergence. Ear placements were all over the board, meaning runt plants were evident and will affect yield to a degree.
Moisture stress was evident in every field! All day long, I was not in an area where we couldn't find cracks in the soil and some very large. So, what does this mean in comparison to the crop stages? For the corn to have a deep kernel set and acceptable test weights, we must get some measurable rain in this area. Not only will the next six weeks be critical for maturity, rain must fall as well.
Nothing seemed to change much for me with how I have judged the soybean crop this year. I started the tour with pod counts a little disappointing and today was much more of the same, if not worse! I would say it seems as if the clusters that form around the nodes were down in numbers. Where we would often like to see 6-9 beans in a cluster to give us adequate yields, I have been noticing many with just 2-3 per node. Additionally today, as we moved north on the tour the soybean maturity was perceived as needing to catch up, telling us that the next 10 days of this soybean crop could be made or broken with the weather that lies ahead.
Well, tomorrow could tell us a lot. Will what we see in Minnesota be promising enough to balance out the previous three days….time will tell??