skip to Main Content

Seeing Crops Through a Hot, Dry June

  • June 17, 2022

After a slow start, corn and soybean planting in Illinois proceeded at a normal pace in 2022. Rainfall in May was at 85 percent of normal statewide. While we remember the very warm days from May 10-15 and a few days later in the month, the statewide May temperature was only about 2 degrees warmer than normal.
The weather during the first half of June continued the trend from May, with temperatures averaging about 2 degrees above normal,…

Read This Article

On the Watch for Soil Crusting

  • May 6, 2022

Corn and soybean planting progress has been slow so far in Illinois, with 7 percent of the corn crop and 5 percent of the soybean crop planted by May 1. These numbers should increase modestly by May 8, but this will not be an early-planting year. With warm temperatures returning next week, planting progress should accelerate.
Soil temperatures at the 2-inch depth over the last ten days ranged from around 60 in southern Illinois to 55 in central Illinois to 50 in northern Illinois.…

Read This Article

Spring Nitrogen Management

  • March 28, 2022

High fertilizer nitrogen prices are providing an incentive to manage N this spring with as much efficiency as possible. We’ll consider here some ways to work towards that.
Nitrogen rate: Higher corn prices are helping to counter the effect of higher N prices on N rate: if N and corn sale prices hold at current levels, MRTN rates for corn following soybean are 154 lb/acre in northern IL, 167 in central IL, and 185 in southern Illinois.…

Read This Article

Is That Enough Nitrogen?

  • March 17, 2022

While N fertilizer prices remain high, at around $0.90 per lb of N as anhydrous ammonia and in the vicinity of $1.00 per lb of N as UAN or urea, recent increases in the price of corn have produced moderately higher MRTN N rates from the N rate calculator. As an example, with N at $1.00 per lb and corn at $7.00 per bushel, the MRTN rate for corn following soybean in central Illinois is 167 lb N per acre,…

Read This Article

Fall Field Work Following a Wet October

  • November 2, 2021

As of October 31, 81% of the 2021 Illinois corn crop and 75% of the soybean crop had been harvested. That’s close to the 5-year average for corn, but 11 percentage points less than the average for soybeans. While harvest started early and with low grain moisture, much of Illinois, with the exception of the southern third of the state, received 6 to 10 inches of rainfall (2 to 6 inches above normal) in the last three weeks of October.…

Read This Article

Notes as Fall Harvest Continues

  • October 20, 2021

After an early start to fall harvest in 2021, widespread rainfall over most of Illinois in the second week of October slowed harvest progress; by October 17, 62% of the corn crop and 51% of the soybean crop were harvested, compared to 5-year averages of 59 and 62% for the two crops, respectively. With rainfall totals of 2-3 inches over most of northern and central Illinois, many fields remain wet as harvest activities resume this week.…

Read This Article

Fertilizer Decisions, Fall 2021

  • October 6, 2021

With warm and dry weather prevailing over the past month, harvest of the corn and soybean crops has proceeded at a brisk pace in Illinois. By October 1, 41% of the corn crop and 32% of the soybean crop had been harvested; both were ahead of the average over the past five years.
Early harvest as dry conditions continue gets many producers and dealers thinking about fall fertilizer. This has taken on a greater urgency in 2021 due to large increases in fertilizer prices over the past year,…

Read This Article

Managing Crops after a Lot of Mid-Season Rain

  • July 19, 2021

In an article posted last week I described the effects of rainfall and standing water on corn plants, especially corn roots, and what this might mean for corn crop prospects. Here, we’ll consider the extent to which damage from wet soils can be addressed by management during the second half of the 2021 season.
A short trip on Saturday made clear that a lot of corn and soybeans in fields and parts of fields where water hasn’t stood are in outstanding shape,…

Read This Article

Wet Soils and Corn

  • July 15, 2021

The 2021 cropping season in Illinois (and the Corn Belt) continues to be a story of haves, have-nots, and have-way-too-much with regard to rainfall. In the first three weeks of June, nearly all of Illinois had below-normal rainfall, and concerns about dryness increased. That ended abruptly: in the three weeks from June 25 through July 14, rainfall totals ranged from below normal in the northwestern counties to 25 to 75% above normal in southern Illinois to 100 to more than 200% above normal in central Illinois,…

Read This Article

Mid-June Notes on the 2021 Soybean Crop

  • June 17, 2021

The 2021 Illinois soybean crop was planted relatively early, with the 50%-planted date of May 5, more than two weeks ahead of normal. As in most recent years, some producers began planting soybeans before they started planting corn, although the first official record of soybeans planted (5% by April 19) was a week later than that for corn (5% by April 12). Planting conditions for soybeans were fair to good, but weather after planting was not consistently good.…

Read This Article
Back To Top