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SIDEDRESSING corn keeps Northeast Texas farmers on the go as they try to do as much as possible between rainy spells

Field work and repairs on our radar

Now that we’ve had some rain it’s time to finish spraying, side-dressing applications.

It seems as though we should be slowing down a bit, but the last couple of weeks have been busy here. The drawn out planting season has led to a drawn out spraying and side-dress season. Last week, however we suspended most of these activities in favor of getting irrigation started up.

I’ve explained before how the winter, the cold, the varmints, and just a lack of operation take a toll on irrigation equipment and add to startup frustration. This year was no different. In fact, as I sit here typing, repairs that we need to make keep popping in my head.

The weatherman says our June rainfall total was approximately .6 inches, about 2.5 inches below normal. Thankfully, we received some rain this week. Sunday, we were a near miss. Monday after we thought opportunities had fizzled, we got rain. Then Wednesday evening, another cell popped up.

Coverage has been sporadic, but we’ve been fortunate as everywhere we farm has gotten something. Totals range from half an inch to three and a half inches. I’ve even heard some places in the county that received more than five inches! But, nobody needed that all at once.

Rescue weed control

As fields become fit again, we will finish herbicide applications and resume fertilizer applications. I have one field of non GMO soybeans where I will have to make a rescue herbicide application. Due to dryness, herbicides I sprayed 10 days ago did not kill the weeds. It’s bad news when that happens, because follow-up applications tend to be very hard on the beans, and never get a great kill on the weeds. Furthermore, sometimes the late application results in a yield penalty.

Of course, this is one of the fields that had three-plus inches of rain. Nonetheless, it will get sprayed tomorrow as the next chance of rain comes in the evening, and the weeds are outgrowing the beans.

Other than that, applications that need to be made are steady. I generally try to spray in the mornings until noon, then again in the evenings if none of the kids have ballgames. Plants are just more receptive to applications that aren’t made in the heat of the day. Dad has been doing most of the side dress applications to corn.

The opinions of the author are not necessarily those of Farm Futures or Farm Progress. 
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