December 1, 2021

OCTOBER 13TH AGRONOMIC INSIGHTS

The one-stop-shop to hearing everything you need to know this week about what is happening in your fields.

 

This week’s featured agronomists are:
Gary Suess – Plainview
Easton Schuch – Le Sueur
Gregg Gustine – Pine Island
Zach Hinsch  – Wanamingo
Larry Veith – Stewartville

Eric Soley – Ellsworth

Scroll down to hear from your local agronomist.


AYS
Your Advanced Yield Systems Weekly Spotlight: 

Gary Suess

As we near the middle of October, combines continue to roll and harvest is plugging along.  Right behind the combines, we are grid sampling at a steady pace too.  We’ve been monitoring yields through some early yield data we’ve received and also monitoring our growers Climate accounts. Overall, yield in both corn and soybeans seem to be really good, but there is some variability depending on the predominant soil types in a field. Also, the rainfall and weather events  per field are having some big impacts – both positive and negative.

Every year has its own set of challenges and it appears 2022 will not be any different. As of now, it appears product availability and pricing are going to be some things we’re going to contend with for 2022.  Grid sampling is a great tool to help take a fertility inventory on a field-by-field basis. Samples provide knowledge to develop a fertilizer plan to help utilize your fertilizer dollar the most efficiently.  There is still plenty of the grid sampling season left, so if you have any fields that need to be updated with new samples, let us know!

Grid sample results for potassium levels that depicts varying levels across a field.

A potassium fertilizer prescription based off of the field’s grid sample results.

Another piece of the AYS program is developing management zones.  Management zones helps a grower’s profitability by identifying different productivity levels throughout the field.  These areas are then assigned to its respective zone.  Once the zones are established, we can then recommend seed and fertilizer in these areas that correlate to the areas of productivity.

I wish everyone a continued safe and productive fall harvest. Best wishes!


West 
Belle Plaine – LeCenter – LeSueur

Easton Schuch

Well its safe to say the corn yields are looking exponentially better than what everyone assumed half way though the growing season. What once was going to be “180bu corn if I’m lucky” has turned into an easy 220 bushels- with it not being out of the question to run a lot higher than that.

A couple of the reasons we are seeing this big jump in yield is because in many places we got the rains exactly when we needed them and chose to not back down on fertilizer or fungicide rates when things were dry.

These applications helped lead to a strong, healthy plant that was patiently waiting for that next rain to pack on bushels. With that being said, we have begun to take out a lot of plots in the area, Answer Plot included, and have started to see a higher than normal benefit to our later season hybrids.

It’s a given that the later we push the variety, the faster the grain tank fills up. However, based off the Le Sueur plot that was taken out we saw a 15 to 20 bushel increase to the average every time we jumped five maturity days. By having that later day this year, we managed to make even better use of the few rains we did get during the longer reproductive periods of those hybrids. This is opposed to the shorter day varieties that were beginning to close up shop at that point.

As always, I hope everyone and their families have a safe rest of harvest!


East  
Pine Island – Cannon Falls -Goodhue -Lake City

Gregg Gustine Agronomist Pine Island

Gregg Gustine

Trait Resistance

When combining your corn on corn acres this year be on the lookout for small irregular areas of down corn. This is how resistance to rootworm traits starts to show up in fields. A root dig will confirm if there is excessive feeding on the plant’s root system. It appears that this problem is expanding across the area, as I have found it on two new farms just in the past week. Identifying this problem now will give us time to make plans for your corn on corn acres for next year. We have been applying a quality insecticide on fully traited hybrids on problem fields, with good results. Please contact your Ag Partners agronomist if you need help with this or any other issue.

Trait resistance on fully traited corn


Central  
Owatonna – Morristown – Wanamingo – Kenyon

Zach Hinsch

Soybean harvest is nearing the end, as some have finished up and others are picking away at their last few acres. Overall soybean yields have exceeded expectations and early corn reports seem to be following that trend as well. As harvest continues, we all should be taking notes on what we are seeing as the combine rolls across the field.

 

It’s Report Card Time!  How did we do?

 

Weeds :  Are there any weeds present? If so,

  • What kind of weeds?
  • How much pressure?
  • What areas of the field?
  • Was there weed pressure present the year before?
  • Was it a spot that may have got missed by the sprayer?

These are all things that will affect how we should be managing that acre for the years to come.

Plant Health : Did any diseases set in? If so,

  • What diseases?
  • Did a fungicide get applied on that acre?
  • If no fungicide was applied, what effect did it have?

SDS and white mold are 2 examples of diseases in soybeans that can greatly decrease yield and will affect management decisions in years to come. For example, enhanced seed treatment, soybean seed selection, and extended rotation are a few management practices that can minimize the chance these diseases will be yield limiting in the future.

Soil Health : Can you see soil fertility from the combine?

It’s not a one size fits all observation, but yes, fluctuation in yield, stalk quality, plant height, and ear size are a few visual signs of our soil health quality. Now of course these visual observations can be caused by other factors, but that’s exactly why we should be grid soil sampling. As yield varies across the field, so does the amount of fertilizer we are removing from the soil. Therefore, let’s be more efficient with our fertilizer applications by utilizing soil samples.

All in all, don’t forget to be taking notes on our current crop as we harvest and get a hold of your sales agronomist to line up some soil sampling.

Have a safe harvest!


South
Elgin – Lewiston – Stewartville

Larry Veith

Dusty Conditions in Corn

Growers may be noticing abnormally high amounts of black and sooty dust during corn harvest this year. This is due to a fungus that is common in the soil and acts as a common “saprophyte”.  Saprophyte, is a plant pathogen that grows on dead plant tissue to promote degradation or breakdown of the corn to be recycled back into the soil.

These fungal spores are produced on the plant surfaces and can give them a dusty or sooty appearance, which becomes airborne during harvest. Because of the faster than normal maturation of the corn crop this year, this problem has become common in many areas.

I have visited with growers who replaced air filters on their combines and cabs.  They have noticed a tremendous amount of soot build up, which has reduced combine engine performance and air quality in the cabs. Do NOT overlook this potential problem many are seeing this year.


WWAS
Ellsworth

Eric Soley

No one likes white mold in their soybean fields, but one advantage of having a high pressure summer is discovering which varieties handle it better. We should have good data to compare white mold field tolerance vs what is published in the seed guides. Even in fields with an atrocious history of white mold, variety selection does make a huge difference.

LEFT: Variety A has a little SWM but is still standing VS
RIGHT: Variety B is lying flat and averaged only 15 bushels/acre.

That picture is also a good reminder that variety selection alone isn’t enough to combat SWM.  It often takes a multi-pronged approach, including population and fungicides to name a few.