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Purple Corn Showing Up in Eastern Indiana


Corn growers in East Central Indiana are seeing something strange in their fields: purple corn.  Pioneer agronomist Justin Welch says, for the most part, the crops in East Central Indiana are in good condition, “We are about 90% planted and the crops are off to a good start.” But his phone was ringing a lot last week with frantic calls about purple corn, “Purple corn is a very interesting development. The crop has to be just in the right growth stage, 2 to 4 inch tall corn.” He explained to HAT that, when you get two consecutive nights of temperatures that drop to 40 degrees or below, the sugars in the plant come to the surface and give the plant a purple color. He says, though the sight of your corn crop turning purple is enough to un-nerve most producers, it is a cosmetic problem only and will not impact yield, “It does not affect the height or the growth stage or any other aspect of the plant except the color.  In the end, it has no impact of yield.”  He added the plant will soon start growing out of the phase and new growth will be a normal green color. He said the phenomenon does tend to be more prevalent in certain hybrids.


In addition to the purple corn, Welch says some hail damage and seedling blight have been reported in some fields.  Listen to the complete report from Justin Welch on the Pioneer Agronomy page.

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