From the Rows - Western Tour Day 2 - Jason Franck

August 20, 2013 08:11 PM

From the Rows - Jason Franck - Western Tour Day 2

Ah... day two of the crop tour, titled….a "tale of two days".

I was anxious as we started to see how today was going to compare with the immaturity/variability type of a crop we dealt with yesterday. Could the area of the state with a greater portion of irrigation, make Nebraska go over the top in 2013?

We took off heading south out of Grand Island. Once crossing Interstate 80 we hit Clay County. This is where we saw some major hail damage on both corn and soybeans covering a large area. It is a bad situation when there are no leaves left on soybean plants from this type of devastation and when you walk into the corn field and it smells rotten. After this, we headed east and then bounced around from north to south, ending up in Nebraska City.

The key take always when comparing day 1 to day 2, were how much more mature the crop was as we headed east towards our destination. On day 1, we were seeing many corn ears in the late milk/early dough stages. So, what concerns does that present? When analyinzing these stages, we know that the days to maturity from late milk to early dough, can range from 25-35 days. Additionally, if we were to shut down the crop at these stages, we could expect yield losses to range from 15-36%.

As we moved into day 2, the maturity level was much further along in both crops. So, if we had to shut down the corn crop at the full dough stage, the losses would range around 10-15%. As a result, we can conclude that a frost is not nearly as big of a factor with the crop we saw on day 2.

As I saw on day 1, one big advantage of the soybeans for the most part was that they were disease free and quite healthy. Moving east though, the drought stress picked up considerably. Many fields showed leaves protecting themselves. Over the next 10 days, I truly feel a timely rain could provide a 10-20% added bonus to this soybean crop. Without this help, the additional chance to add pods and fill them out appropriately could be lost.

All in all, the crop in Nebraska needs more time to continue its maturity process. The crop here was put in much later than normal, so we still need the help from Mother Nature to provide beneficial weather in the next 4-6 weeks.

Tomorrow is a new day and a new state. Many people are awaiting the comments coming from these two remaining states. Let's see what Iowa has in store for day three.


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