Agronomist says recheck stalk strength after rain

An agronomist says farmers might need to scout fields again for standability issues if they’ve received recent rains.  Bob Berkovich with Pioneer in Wisconsin says much of his state received between two and three inches of rain over the weekend, and that might not have helped corn with weakening stalks. “It kind of soaks into that stalk. The inside of that stalk can be kind of like a sponge, and throughout that wetting and drying process, it can physically weaken that stalk.”

Berkovich tells Brownfield getting out in the field to do a push test or pinch test is wise, even if it was done last week before the rain arrived.  He says if under 10% of the plants show standability problems, that’s okay but, “If it’s more like 20-25 percent that fails, that’s a field that you probably want to get to sooner rather than later. If 30 percent or more of those plants fail the test, it’s probably a field you want to get into ASAP (as soon as possible) to harvest, certainly before another rain event or a storm would come through.”

Berkovich says soil types that hold more moisture and fields without a fungicide application or that have been corn-on-corn for many years are more susceptible to diseases, so those fields will need to be monitored closely as well.

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