With planting complete in most Hoosier fields, it is now time to monitor early crop development especially in a year that saw later than average planting dates. Most of the corn got planted later than producers would have liked, and heavy rains have caused some crusting issues for soybeans in some areas. Mary Gumz, with DuPont Pioneer, says for many growers the top concern now is making sure the young crops have enough nitrogen to get of to a good start, “Anyone who still needs to sidedress or get nitrogen on their crop needs to make that their #1 priority.” She told HAT each farmer must evaluate his own situation and determine how much nitrogen may have been lost because of wet soils or standing water in fields. DuPont Pioneer has resources to help growers with this issue at their web site. Gumz said she has had some calls about yellow corn or striping on corn. She feels this is a temporary situation and should resolve itself with warmer weather.
Many spray programs were delayed by windy and wet conditions and as a result Gumz says weed control needs to be the second priority for growers, “Right now we are at a good stage for killing weeds; most weeds are in that 2 to 3 inch stage which is on label for most post-emergence herbicides.” She added that the cool and humid weather has kept the weeds from hardening, which they do in dryer conditions, and this makes them absorb the herbicide better. She said farmers who can spray now should get a good clean kill on the weeds across their fields.
Number three on her priority list is monitoring for insects, “Root worm hatch has just started so growers need to be watching for signs of infestation.” She suggested growers use the resources of Purdue Extension to monitor insect pressure in the state and in their local area.