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Should I Use A Fungicide in Corn this Year?

Jul 23, 2013

Question: Should I use a fungicide in my corn this year—how do I know if it’s worth the cost?

Answer: Knowing your risk for disease and scouting fields are the only ways to know with any certainty. I can tell you the odds are more in favor of a fungicide application this year, especially in those areas that encountered delayed corn planting and excess moisture. Both of these factors encourage foliar disease.  Other benefits you may see this year from fungicide use are help with standability and in-field drydown as well slowing the spread of disease to allow for longer rotations.  If you do decide on a fungicide treatment, make sure the method of application you choose is planned out ahead of time.  Here are some additional considerations:

  1. Take a disease manual with you when you go to the field. Know which diseases to look for based on your current conditions.
  2. Group your fields by risk level to help dictate your scouting routine.
  3. If you spray a fungicide, recheck the field to evaluate control and evaluate for any imbalance of nature caused by the application.

Fungicide applications in corn may be increasing

In the past, fungicide applications on hybrid corn were mostly regarded as uneconomical but an increase in corn-following-corn acres, associated increased disease risk and the higher price of corn mean fungicide applications may be more common.



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