6 Harvest Tips to Save You Bushels

August 30, 2012 11:18 PM

Farm Journal Field Agronomist Ken Ferrie provides advice on harvesting corn in tough drought conditions.

Harvesting your 2012 corn crop will have unique challenges. Farm Journal Field Agronomist Ken Ferrie provides the following advice:

  1. Prioritize your fields. Start scouting your fields now, Ferrie suggests. Then you can line up the fields, in ABC fashion, in terms of which are high-priority, medium-priority and low-priority fields.
  2. Determine which fields have the most fragile plants and harvest those first.
  3. Check stalk quality. Try the push test on your corn fields, Ferrie suggests. See which stalks have the most resistance. If you can easily knock a stalk down, plan on harvesting it immediately.
  4. Fight the fungus. Scout your fields to see if aflatoxin, nasty fungi that is common in hot, dry ears, is present. If it is, plan to harvest that field early. Ferrie says you’ll most likely have to store this corn, to dry it out.
  5. Look behind the combine. Ferrie says this year especially, machine loss could be high. Calibrate your combine to better harvest shorter plants and smaller ears.
  6. Keep adjusting. Since conditions will be different in each field, Ferrie says you must recalibrate your combine for the changing conditions.


Ferrie shares his thoughts:


For More Information
Read the latest harvest news and check out AgWeb’s Corn Harvest Map and Soybean Harvest Map.


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Spell Check

8/31/2012 10:21 AM

  My crop insurance agent has pointed out that once the corn is in the bin, adjustment will not be made for aflatoxin damage. An adjuster has to make the determination prior to the corn going into the bin. If it goes to an elevator, the elevator must be able to produce a sheet showing that a test was done {for each load with aflatoxin damage) which lists the load, number of bushels, and amount of aflatoxin present. Without it, crop insurance will not pay for damage. On an unrelated matter, if an accidental fire such as caused by your machine, damages the field, crop insurance will not cover the loss.


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