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Acres of Knowledge

All issues concerning Small Farms, Agriculture, Local Food Systems, and the Natural Resources.

Check Your Fields for Stalk Quality

From my recent visits to local corn fields, I have been surprised by the rapid decline in this year's crop quality. In a sampling of corn fields in an area that has not received the flooding rains that others have. 20-100 percent of the stalks FAILED the "push" strength test. As you might expect, this is not good at all.

In the last week, a number of corn belt universities have recommending that farmers check their corn fields for ear and stalk rots. After my field visits, I must agree that stalk quality is some of the worst I have seen in recent years.

If you are planning to let your corn field dry, be sure to check your fields to identify the fields most at risk for lodging. University of Nebraska-Lincoln has a good article on "Corn Ear and Stalk Rots".

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