2010 Crop Tour Day 4 Observations from Mark Bernard

August 19, 2010 08:16 PM

Final day of the 2009 Midwest Pro Farmer Crop Tour had us heading out to the west and south of Iowa City. The crew today included Tour Leader Roger Bernard, Sebastian from Argentina and one of my favorites on the Crop Tour over the years Andy Vance of Buckeye Radio Network. We had a great day of sampling and the day went by very fast. Before we knew it, we were rolling into Austin. While sampling fields is work, we still have a lot of fun in the process.

We headed west out of IA City, then made a loop to the south, came back north and made a relatively straight shot to the MN border, staying just east of I-35. Not unlike the route we covered last year, we found lots of cattle, fences and lots of water damaged crop in the southern part of the route.

The corn yield average on our route today was around 169 with a high near 230 and a low of 103.In the soybeans we didn’t have a pod count over 2000 in the 3 x 3 with most running in the 800 range. The pod counts in general were disappointing on our route today.


Insect pressure was light but there was a lot more disease pressure in the soybeans today. SDS was very evident, particularly on the southern portion of the route. Of special concern were those fields where the pods were relatively flat. The impact on the yield in those fields will be immense. As we moved north the intensity of SDS lessened. However it wasn’t difficult to find in practically every field we sampled and the final yield loss will be difficult to determine at this point.

All in all, the corn crop we saw today was impressive although it took awhile for it to hit stride and show us the kind of yields Iowa is usually capable of. Corn crop health was good; yields were good while with the exception of what we saw in parts of IL, the maturity was behind in the south from most of what we saw on the rest of the Tour. Interesting crop to look at today, great group of guys to sample with and great way to end the final leg of the Tour.


Would like to thank our sponsors for sponsoring this year’s Crop Tour and to Pro Farmer for asking me to serve as Tour Consultant again this year. Sure, it’s a lot of work but it’s also a lot of fun and a wonderful way to see the U.S. corn and soybean crop as well as meeting some great people from all over the world. Would highly recommend it to anyone interested.     

Click here for complete 2010 Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour Coverage.

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