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Serving: IN

Early Yield Reports Nothing to Brag About

Early Yield Reports Nothing to Brag About
Low yield reports adds to uncertainty for farmers.

The reports coming out of the fields so far, albeit anecdotal in most cases, aren't encouraging. Yields from 7 bushels per acre in a field where yield was estimated before the field was destroyed, to around 100 bushels per acre cover the range so far.

There is better corn in parts of Indiana. Admittedly, some of the early reports are on droughty ground or light ground, perhaps even sandy ground. That's one reason those fields have already been harvested. Still, reports from a farmer in Greene County says he's hearing reports of 100 bushels per acre from counties south of him, where much higher yields are more typical.

One farmer in Greene County says his milo may be his best crop. That's not encouraging, since a good milo yield may be around 100 bushels per acre, give or take. Milo is a form of grain sorghum that is more resistant to drought than some other types of the species.

One crops consultant in central Indiana says farmers in his county are talking about 120 bushels per acre, when the county yield is typically considerably higher. However, the consultant thinks 100 bushels per acre may be closer. The problem, he notes, is that many farmers haven't been within their fields yet, at least not past the end rows. It's important to know what's in the middle of the field before getting too excited about the yield you might have, he notes.

Not all the state will yield that low. Farmers in northwest Indiana, from Tippecanoe County north, are generally expecting bigger yields. Wanatah is reportedly a garden spot. Known for its sandier soils, it has received timely rains. Even there, however, farmers believe they won't harvest what they normally do in terms of corn yield. The highest estimates so far have been 185 to 210 bushels per acre in Benton County. Some areas in that region nearly always average more than 200 bushels per acre.

The eastern half of Indiana remains an enigma. Planting was very late, running well into June in some areas. Some agronomists have been to northeast Indiana, and report that there are lots of problems with pollination. The biggest problem field scouts everywhere talk about is abortion of kernels near the tip. Not only is the ear effectively shorter in terms of number of kernels per row, but some of the kernels closest to the tip that did develop are still relatively small. The result will likely be corn with low test weights this fall.

Yet others are claiming late-planted corn, like that in eastern Indiana, may be the best corn harvested this year. Stay tuned!
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