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Published on Thursday, April 14, 2016
While April field activities commence, there are several key things to remember when you head out to the field. Make sure to avoid soil compaction and plant your corn and soybeans so rapid germination and even emergence take place. The weather last fall was very conducive to correcting the previous seasons’ compaction pains. Now we’re essentially starting with a clean-slate in regards to our soil’s physical condition. It’s said that 75 percent or more of a total season’s compaction is created by the first spring tillage operation. Be mindful of soil moisture conditions at the depth of tillage/planting and what your tractor and equipment axle loads are. Wait to plant until soil temperatures hold a constant 55°F at the 4 in. depth. Both crops will germinate at lower temperatures, though emergence may be less than desired.
One should also consider air temperatures and rain events. Field service calls always begin with the fields that were planted right ahead of a cool rain event. Our goal here is to get plants to uniformly emerge and photosynthesize as soon as possible. Be patient, slow down, and think. Always protect the crop!
Author: Denny Cobb
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