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Planting season do’s and don’ts

Tips for enduring variable weather and playing the waiting to plant corn and soybeans in the Midwest.

Kristy Foster Seachrist, Digital editor

April 22, 2024

2 Min Read
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Ready, set… Back to the starting line. That’s how some producers are feeling as planting time is here but the weather is not playing nice with faux warmth for a day or two and then cold and rainy weather for three days in the Midwest.

Randy Niver, technical agronomist for Asgrow, says it’s time to finalize the decisions on which fields are to be planted and then decide if it will be corn or soybeans.

Niver says his best advice to producers is that if you are on the verge of planting, go for it but be able to stop at any point.

He adds don’t start planting right ahead of a cold rain—that’s a big don’t.

Managing planting risk

oOne of the hardest parts of waiting is thinking the planting window has opened but finding out the hard way—it’s not,” he says.. “Sometimes, the planting window might not be for three weeks.”

The best thing a producer can do right now is look for the warming trend and not a cooling trend.

Just because the soil temperatures are in the 50’s right now, doesn’t mean they won’t fall into the 40’s during a cooling period.

“Spread the risk out, plant some when the opportunity arises and then wait during the cold spell,” says Niver.

Planting prep tips

Take the time to get ready for the planting race.

Niver says take the time to go over equipment one more time. Make sure everything is set before it’s go time.

“You don’t want to be broke down when the sun is shining,” says Niver. “Get your game plan—that way you aren’t scrounging to get things done when waiting.”

Use these tips to make sure you, your equipment and your fields are ready to go when the weather is this spring.

  1. Equipment: This is the chance to avoid an equipment breakdown.

  2. Take a look at the GPS. Set and set the GPS boundaries.

  3. Start to scout fields.

  4. Line up everything logistically.

  5. Determine which fields are wetter and which are lighter.

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