If left standing in the field, does the corn lose yield as it loses moisture?
That's a question that's been around for more than two decades. No one has brought out conclusive proof one way or the other.
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Here's the concept: You harvest half a field and it makes190 bushels per acre. Three weeks later, you harvest the other half and it may only make 180 bushels per acre.
It's the same hybrid or hybrids on nearly the same ground. Can that be true, and if so, why does it happen? We're talking yields corrected to no. 2 yellow corn at 15% moisture in all cases.
Evidence, which in most case is little more than anecdotal reports, have been conflicting. Some people report harvesting information that clearly shows a difference.
But when a researcher tries to duplicate it in trials, he may or may not see any difference. So there's no solid proof but just enough conjecture out there to keep the idea alive and tantalizing. If it's true, it would differently point toward harvesting earlier and drying corn vs. letting it field dry.
There will be a unique opportunity to get one more look at this theory through the Crop watch '15 field. Half the field was harvested about two weeks ago. Since the operator went to harvest beans, the other half remains to be harvested. To make it even more interesting, the field consists of two hybrids in 24-row blocks.
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Some who believe in the theory say some hybrids may be affected by it, and others may not show that much difference.
Theories put forward include that respiration of the kernel while standing in the field causes actual loss of weight, which is separate from moisture loss.
We'll be watching for the results, and let you know what the farmer finds.