A corn crop challenged by weather

Tornadoes, hail, and significant amounts of rainfall have farmers across the Corn Belt battling Mother Nature to get field-work finished.

Purdue Extension corn specialist Bob Nielsen says the ponding he is seeing in some areas is a concern.  “At this point in time in the summer when soils are saturated or ponded – roots begin to die pretty quickly,” he says.  “Simply because of lack of oxygen.  Some of the areas of the fields have already been damaged – and to a certain extent you can’t get a whole lot more damage.”

Another issue, Nielsen tells Brownfield is loss of nitrogen.  With nitrogen loss also comes the potential for yield loss.  “It’ll be a full range from maybe no effect because it was minimal nitrogen loss, to if it lost a tremendous amount of its nitrogen already applied and no more was put on – there could be yield losses of easily 50 percent,” he says.

But, he says it is very difficult to gauge just how much nitrogen is lost during the growing season.

AUDIO: Bob Nielsen, Purdue Corn Specialist (3:30mp3)



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