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Have your agronomic questions answered by a Farm Journal agronomist. E-mail us directly at TestPlots@FarmJournal.com, and we’ll respond on this blog to provide an interactive dialogue.

What Causes Uneven Spacings In Corn?

Nov 15, 2010

Question:I heard something recently about how to tell the causes of poor corn spacing but didn’t get the entire story. Please pass that along when you have a chance. Thanks.

Answer:You probably saw a snippet of our Corn College TV program on corn spacing. Here’s a quick recap. After the corn emerges, there are simple ways to determine the causes of problematic plant spacings. For instance, a double occurs when the planter meter picks up two seeds and drops two at the same time. In the field, you can tell whether this is what occurred when it looks like you have good uniform spacing on either side of the two plants that are too close together. However, a misplaced seed looks different from a double. With a misplaced seed, while the spacing is still real close together, you will see a gap from where the seed should have been on one side of the grouping. In this case the meter functioned properly in releasing one seed at a time, but there was ricochet in the seed tube, which caused the seed to bounce and the timing to be off. You can learn more about corn spacing guidelines in Episode 3 of Corn College TV. 
 
This blog is provided as an interactive way for you to have your questions answered by our Farm Journal Agronomists. E-mail your nitrogen, soil fertility, soil density, planter set-up, scouting, and other questions to: TestPlots@FarmJournal.com.
 
 
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