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Acres of Knowledge

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

Posted by Paul Mariman -

This is a post from oservasions made by Douglas Gucker looking at the Corn Emergence

Corn Emergence and Spacing Problems Cutting Yield Potential


(Photograph 1)
At the tip of the pen that is a coleoptile that has not emerged and down the row is a corn plant in V2 growth stage (2 leaf collars visible). The difference between these two stages is over 120 GDD's. Research proves that if this problem is wide spread through the field a 5% yield decrease is to be expected. This field had an issue with the soil being worked wet and having a cloddy seedbed.


(Photograph 2)
As you can see, there are 3 plants within 6" and then a foot gap to the next plant in the row. This is not exactly a picket fence type of precision planting. I am noticing a number of fields with this issue. Again, research shows a 5% yield hit from poor plant spacing within the row. Some farmers are blaming this on "stickier" seed treatments and the talc not working as well. The University of Nebraska took a look at the issue of seed tube wear and seed spacing variability within the row and discovered a link between the two. Their research determined that if the interior of the seed tube was dull and felt like very fine sandpaper, then unacceptable seed spacing would occur. Shiny slick seed tube surfaces are needed for precise seed spacing.

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