Jul 30, 2014
Home| Tools| Events| Blogs| Discussions| Sign UpLogin

CornCollegeBanner home


October 2010 Archive for Ask an Agronomist

RSS By: Farm Journal Agronomists, Farm Journal

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.

How Do I Distinguish Between Nutrient Deficiencies?

Oct 28, 2010

Question: You’ve said that it’s easy to confuse a potassium deficiency with a nitrogen deficiency. How do I make a distinction between the two?

Answer: Both nutrients are mobile and move from the oldest to the newest part of the plant, but they’ll look different on a corn leaf. Nitrogen deficiency starts at the tip of the leaf and comes down through the mid-rib, so there will be a V-pattern through the mid-rib. However, a potassium deficiency starts at the tip of the leaf and then goes down through the outside of the leaf. Don’t assume your problem is one or the other, because that can have negative consequences. For instance, if you apply more nitrogen when there’s a potassium deficiency, you can actually make the potassium deficiency worse. For more information on this topic, check out our Ask an Agronomist segment of Episode 2 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.
 

Selecting Corn Hybrids For Optimum Performance

Oct 25, 2010

Question: Do you have any advice on selecting corn hybrids for optimum performance?

Answer: There is more than one way to go about effectively selecting corn hybrids. That said, here are six steps we believe will help you do a good job of selecting those hybrids that will perform well on your farm:
1. Begin with trials in zones nearest your farm.
2. Compare hybrids with similar maturities within a trial.
3. Evaluate consistency of performance across zones and years.
4. Compare performance in other unbiased trials.
5. Consider hybrid performance for other traits--for example: standability, drydown rate, grain quality, etc.
6. Base your decision on more than one or two local test plots.
 

Is It OK To Move Forward With Fall Nitrogen Applications?

Oct 18, 2010

Question: There are a lot of farmers here who have already applied their fall nitrogen. Is it ok to move ahead with that?

Answer: The key is knowing your soil temperatures, prior to making fall nitrogen applications. You want those soils to drop down below 50 degrees F in order to minimize the risk of N loss through leaching, denitrification and volatilzation. Applying N when the soils are warmer is not a good practice for your fertility program or for the environment. Allow soil temperature to dictate N application because it also impacts the activity of the soil micro-organisms that are responsible for the conversion of ammonium to nitrate. Although it requires some patience this year for soil temperatures to reach the appropriate levels, your waiting will be rewarded as soil microbes continue to be active even below freezing temperatures.
 
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.
 

How Can I Address Ruts This Fall

Oct 11, 2010

Question: I have ruts on top of ruts to deal with in some of my fields. The first ones are from the 2009 harvest. Then I had more after I sidedressed and sprayed corn this past spring. What would you recommend?

Answer:This is the first year I’ve seen wheel track compaction from a sidedress bar that was severe enough to stunt corn. If you’re rotating to soybeans, that compaction might not have to come out, but if it’s a dry fall and you have time, take the opportunity to fix it. You probably will need to do tillage to fix the more serious problems. Your tillage tool has to reach beneath the deepest compaction. And you must cut those wheel tracks at an angle, so till across the tracks. A couple of other things I’m recommending to farmers this fall: If you have severe wheel tracks in soybean residue, you may need to rip with an in-line ripper in two directions or use an in-line ripper followed by a chisel plow. If you’re growing continuous corn, you’ll probably need to run a disk ripper deep enough to fix the compaction and also bury any residue. If you don’t have a disk ripper, make two passes—one with an in-line ripper to remove the wheel tracks and one with a disk chisel, shallowly in the opposite direction, to bury residue. More information on how to manage ruts is available at the following link.
 
 
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.
 
 
 

How Soon Can I Plant After Applying NH3?

Oct 08, 2010

Question: I would like a way to safely determine when I can safely plant into strips after I have applied NH3. This past year I waited two weeks, but I would like to plant sooner. I tried a pH test but could not find a kit that tested high enough. 

Answer: We would not recommend planting on strip-till with spring-applied anhydrous ammonia. The risk for seed and root injury is too great. Receiving rainfall between when the anhydrous ammonia was applied and when you plant will help the situation. The sooner the ammonia is converted to nitrate will also create a less toxic situation. Consider using the strip-till tool as a tillage pass to create a good environment emergence and root growth while keeping your fertilizer pass separate. If possible, consider applying the nitrogen in a combination of placements such as starter fertilizer on the planter, weed-n-feed, and sidedress. A timely planting date is a critical to achieving high corn yields; don’t let your fertilizer program direct your planting date. 
 
 
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.
 

How Do I Address Foliar Diseases In Corn?

Oct 05, 2010

 

Question: I’ve had some problems with foliar diseases in my corn this year. Any suggestions for next spring?
 
Answer: Are you aware of why you’ve had the problem? If you’ve had difficulty doing normal tillage and burying residue the past couple of years, you may have inoculum built-up. Inoculum can also come in from neighboring fields. Corn-on-corn in no-till and strip-till supports the toughest disease situations of all, especially if you grew a susceptible hybrid that produced a lot of inoculum. In any case, hybrid selection becomes very important. Resistance to diplodia is fairly easy to find; talk to your seeds person so he or she can also recommend hybrids with good scores on fusarium and gibberella.
 
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.
 
 

What Benefit Does Sizing Residue Provide?

Oct 01, 2010

Question: Is there much of a benefit to sizing residue?

Answer: There can be. Sizing residue this fall can help prepare the soil for your next crop, and it can also eliminate tillage trips and planter clogs. The smaller pieces of crop residue that result also decompose faster than larger ones. One caution: if you do shredding, fall tillage may need to follow quickly so the residue doesn’t have an opportunity to drift. You don’t want it to blow onto your neighbors’ fields or drift into piles. For more information on this topic, check out our AgWeb story at the following link.
 
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.
 
Log In or Sign Up to comment

COMMENTS

Hot Links & Cool Tools

    •  
    •  
    •  
    •  
    •  
    •  

facebook twitter youtube View More>>
 
 
 
 
The Home Page of Agriculture
© 2014 Farm Journal, Inc. All Rights Reserved|Web site design and development by AmericanEagle.com|Site Map|Privacy Policy|Terms & Conditions