Originally published in the Chat 'n Chew Café (26 May 1998)
Also published in the Purdue Pest Management & Crop Production Newsletter (29 May 1998)

Keep an Eye on Those Corn Plants!

Uneven stand of corn R.L. (Bob) Nielsen , Agronomy Department , Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907-1150
Internet address: rnielsen@purdue.edu

By now, you probably have most of your corn in the ground, some for maybe the second time. If it has not emerged yet, it will soon. Stand establishment uniformity and vigor play an important role in determining the ultimate yield potential for a field. Mixtures of gaps and crowded plants can easily decrease yields by 5 to 7 ½ bushels per acre. Uneven emergence can result in yield losses of 8 to 20 percent.

Take the time to walk fields during the next week or two and take thorough notes on stand establishment problems that may exist. Here's a checklist for note-taking.

If you are into site-specific crop management, then recording and mapping GPS-based information relative to stand establishment uniformity and vigor will be time well-spent when it comes around to interpreting yield data after harvest this fall. Problems with stand establishment commonly influence final yield, yet are also commonly overlooked at the end of the season when trying to perform a "post-mortem" analysis of low or variable yields.

Corn Growers Guidebook

For other information about corn, take a look at the Corn Growers Guidebook on the World Wide Web at http://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/corn/

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