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Northern Illinois Agriculture

University of Illinois Extension
Corn on corn variety plots planted at NIARC May 9th, 2013

University of Illinois yield results

A deadly weekend weather-wise in Illinois, a dramatic warm-up over the weekend spawned tornadoes across the Midwest. Temperatures at the research center rose to 66 degrees on Sunday morning prior to the arrival of the storm front. Sustained hourly winds were measured at 25 mph. Fortunately, for those who still have corn standing; most fields seem to have weathered the storm with little additional lodging, although the corn plants do appear a little roughed up, and minus a few leaves. Our sympathies and wishes go to all affected by the turbulent weather over the weekend, including the communities of Washington, Coal City and Diamond.

Despite both early and late season challenges, the 2013 growing season is turning out to be a record setter. The corn yield in Illinois is currently forecast at 180 bushels per acre, 15 bushels above the September 1 forecast. Northwest and Northeast Illinois have predicted yields of 184 and 187 bushels per acre respectively. If the overall state yield is finalized, it will tie the record yield set in 2004. Production is forecast at 2.11 billion bushels, 64 percent above last year. This production would be the third highest in history,

The soybean yield in Illinois is forecast at 49 bushels per acre, 3 bushels above the September 1 forecast. Production is forecast at 461 million bushels, a 20 percent increase over 2012.

For those who are making selection decisions on 2014 corn hybrid and soybean varieties, the Illinois Variety Testing website can be a helpful resource. The University of Illinois Variety Testing program began in 1934. Crop performance tests are conducted annually to provide farmers, and private seed companies with information on hybrids and varieties of the major Illinois field crops. The trials are conducted in a research-based manner to minimize variability and insure the integrity of the results.

Performance reports available include commercial corn, conventional and roundup resistant soybeans, forage crops, wheat and sorghum. The corn and soybean variety trials are divided into the northern, west central, east central and southern regions. Results are downloadable at

Over the next several weeks I'll be joining NRCS soil scientist Mark Bramstead and resource conservationist Paul Youngstrum in a series of soil health seminars. Our locations include Dwight, Yorkville, Watseka, Streator, Bloomington and St. Charles. Contact your local Soil and Water Conservation District for dates and times and join us for the ½ day programs.

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