We are excited to introduce LathamCast, a series of audio insights for the innovative corn grower brought to you by the experts at Latham Hi-Tech Hybrids. In our first episode, Corn Product Manager Jamie Carda discusses the exclusive Seed2Soil® Program.
For your convenience, we will be embedding our audio podcasts into blog posts so you can listen directly from your internet browser. An archive of all the episodes will be available in the podcasts directory. You can also subscribe to LathamCast episodes through the RSS feed.
Listen to LathamCast Episode 1:
No matter how sophisticated and hi-tech farming becomes, nothing can replace a little “low tech” hands-on scouting. A little time spent observing plant characteristics, insect pressure and field conditions can actually help you increase yield results next season.
Two or three weeks after pollination is a critical period for kernel set. After pollination, when the silks turn brown and dry up, carefully unwrap the husk leaves and gently shake the ear. Silks from the pollinated ovules will readily drop off. Silks that don’t drop off have not been fertilized. You may also notice “fresh” long silks, which is a symptom of unsuccessful pollination. If corn did not pollinate, it’s important to determine if it is from insect problems or weather related.
This season, there was notable unevenness in pollination due to spring weather conditions and wet soils. Inspecting fields today to evaluate ear development in relation to conditions can help determine the cause of the problem and help plan on which tech traits to consider using next season. Matching traits to know growing conditions can maximize the yield potential of ever acre you plant.
From emergence through harvest, there are many opportunities to closely observe performance on all of your hybrids.
Now is the time to review early season problems, and note any effects from insects, disease, cultural practices or weather. It’s important to collect additional production information on hybrid performance by soil type as well as abnormal physical characteristics of plants.
From the vegetative to the reproductive growth stages, it’s important to note the uniformity of pollination throughout each field. Uneven plant height can indicate areas of stress in the field and that, along with other yield limiting factors, can change the timing of corn growth and the development, leading to pollination problems.
Watch for conditions that impact moisture uptake, including insects that destroy roots. Corn Rootworm (CRW) larvae are ferocious root eaters. CRW is thriving this season and pressure can vary from field-to-field. At this time of year, CRW larvae can be found on roots more easily because they are larger. Scout multiple locations within a field for larvae and make notes on other corn soil pests as well.
Collecting information will give you insights as you plan which hybrids are best for your land next year. The primary focus of Latham Hi-Tech Hybrids’ Seed2Soil program is to help you optimize yield potential by planting the right product, in the right location, for the right reasons.