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Tips for Protecting Yield in the Field – 2019 Edition

Rain, rain and more rain. That about sums up the 2019 growing season so far in most regions of the country. Now is the time to look at how you can manage the growing season to protect the potential yield in the field.

Postemergence herbicide applications on corn and soybeans

Know the type and size of your weeds. Now that it’s July and our temperatures are rising; those weeds will be growing very quickly. Waterhemp, giant ragweed and marestail are fast-growing weeds that can take over your fields quickly. Scout fields with your Landmark agronomist to identify problems to make accurate recommendations for your herbicide program.

Don’t short your crops.

With a compressed season, it’s tempting to cut back on application expenses. You only have one shot at making a post-emergence herbicide application this year, so make it count. If you need to go back for a respray when your corn is at V12 or later, your herbicide options are severely limited, and crop damage or other problems dramatically increases. Don’t cut rates and be sure to use an adjuvant. Take the time to do it right the first time.

Nutrient applications on corn and soybeans

Plan a tissue-testing strategy. Tissue sampling is one way to identify plant nutrition deficiencies before you see symptoms in the field. A proactive sampling plan can help you pinpoint where your fertility plan may be falling short. That means you can supplement those nutrients that are needed instead of fertilizing blindly, which may be less economical. Combined with soil sampling, tissue sampling is an effective diagnostic tool for mitigating plant nutrition deficiencies and agronomic issues in your field.

Use ag tech to identify problems and opportunities

This year, it will be critical to identify the parts of your fields that look good and should be invested in to optimize profitability potential, versus those areas that are drowned out and don’t need a nutrient application. You can use the R7®Field Monitoring Tool to compare your fields. This tool can also help you pinpoint your fields with the high yield potential. Additionally, in-season imagery from the R7® Tool can help you identify variability in each field which allows you to concentrate your inputs on the places that have the greatest yield and ROI potential. You can then easily create a variable rate script from the zones in the in-season image. This targeted approach will help you make the most of your inputs and help maximize return at the end of the season.

Fungicide applications on corn and soybeans

Use multiple modes of action. Apply a fungicide with multiple modes of action because your plants will be growing rapidly and you’ll want to manage any disease pressure quickly. A good example is a broad-spectrum, preventive fungicide recommended for the control of many corn and soybean diseases.

Don’t use less than the recommended rate. You may hear that if your plants are smaller than normal, you can cut down on your fungicide rates. This is not a recommended practice; in fact, it’s the quickest way to build resistance to a fungicide. Use the recommended rate.

Look at your hybrid’s Response to Fungicide Score.

A Response to Fungicide (RTF) score can help you determine how a particular hybrid will perform when sprayed with a fungicide. The score comes from replicated field-trials where hybrids sprayed with a fungicide at V5 and VT are compared to hybrids with no fungicide treatment. After measuring the yield difference between hybrids, a score of high, medium or low response is assigned to each hybrid based on its yield difference between the treated and non-treated compared to all hybrids tested. Ask you Landmark agronomist for more information on RTF scores on the specific hybrids you planted.

Bottom line: Don’t write this season off. As the season progresses, you’ll have opportunities to apply herbicides, fungicides and crop nutrients to help protect your yield and ROI potential. Work closely with your Landmark agronomist to make sure you give your crops a fair shot at success.

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Grain News – Planting Delays Leave Opportunity for Grain Marketing

Corn and soybean markets are trading neutral to slightly firmer on this rainy Tuesday morning. Yesterday’s crop progress report showed few surprises. The USDA says corn is 15% planted while trade estimated 14% and we were at just 6% last week. We are dragging behind the five-year average of 27%. Soybeans are said to be 3% planted vs. 1% last week and a five-year average of 6%. US Winter wheat conditions are said to be 64% good/excellent compared to 62% last week.

Weather has not been very conducive to getting spring fieldwork and planting complete. The Midwest is set to see a rain system move in today and tomorrow, covering a chunk of the corn belt. It should dry up by the weekend, but the forecast shows another system moving in late Monday. Below average temps aren’t helping to dry up the moisture, but it’s expected to warm up this weekend.

The local farmer is holding tight to their old crop corn supply as they hope that some sort of bounce happens in the next month or two. Corn basis has stayed firm, but that still leaves the farmer less than excited about the flat price. Old crop bean carryout is still weighing on markets, and with a wet spring, it’s likely that late acres will switch to beans.

While it certainly has not been an exciting start to 2019 when it comes to marketing, now is the time to take a look at your marketing plan and make some updates to your target orders and sales goals. Remember to continue to be proactive in marketing, so opportunities don’t slip away from you.

As always, give us a call if we can help!

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