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PFR Report: 2021 Farming Resolutions with PFR

Published on Wednesday, February 3, 2021

With spring approaching and farmers making plans for 2021, Practical Farm Research (PFR®) has some resolutions and unique learnings to share. This research has been discovered over the last few years and could help you prepare for 2021. These insights have demonstrated to be profitable and reliable for most farms.

Here are a few strategies to consider implementing on farming operations in 2021:

Resolutions/Lessons Learned

Be prepared to capitalize on an early planting window if it is presented.

  • Planting early is a PFR Proven™ Success Strategy for both corn and soybeans.


Continuously work on improving the planter pass.

  • Plan on two people working together to set the planter. Having the extra person to step back and observe the planter going through the field will ensure proper adjustment and performance.
  • Understand, monitor, and gain familiarity with adjusting downforce, including wing downforce. Tillage, field conditions, soil type, and planting speed will require different amounts of downforce.

Understand your plant stand.

  • In addition to counting the final stand identify the cause of missing plants. Is it from shallow planting depth, crusting, post-emergence dampening off, etc.?
  • Evaluate the differences in the uniformity of plants between V1-V3. It can be easier to find variants when plants are smaller.

Adjust plans based on planting date and conditions.

  • Corn - When planting early into cool soils, consider in-furrow crop protection products and/or applying phosphorus with the planter.
  • Soybeans - Be prepared to adjust seeding rates higher as the season progresses.

Consider your spray water source.

  • What is your water’s pH and hardness?
    Would a water conditioner improve the outcome of your foliar or fungicide pass?

2-Year Multi-Location Water Conditioning Study ROI:
Products Applied with Versa Max® AC to V5 Corn

Fungicides are working, especially the new products with multiple modes of action.

  • If you have never sprayed fungicide before, considering trying a field! Being able to compare late-season plant health, stay-green, and yield are powerful learning opportunities.
  • If southern rust or tar spot are present before R3, a spray pass can potentially reduce further disease levels and yield loss.
  • When spraying fungicide, spray before noon – if possible, ideally with dew present on leaves.
  • Corn fungicide recommendations – use a 15 gal/A. carrier rate, apply at VT-R2, consider adding a boron product.
  • Soybean fungicide recommendations – use a 20 gal/A. carrier rate, apply at R3, consider adding a molybdenum product.

Track and record differences or problems found throughout the season.

  • Figure out what organizational process works best for you; keep it simple and concise.
  • ‘A picture is worth a thousand words.’ Visuals can be helpful for diagnostic purposes. Most cell phones automatically record the date and time of the photo.
  • Utilize FARMserver® to track and organize fieldwork and scouting observations.

Follow the data and minimize emotional decisions.

  • Having a plan will set a clear path to follow and eliminate last-minute stressful decisions.
  • Do not give up on a crop - continue with the plan unless the data says otherwise.

2-Year Multi-Location Corn – Delayed Planting – Hybrid Response – New Return

Try something new.

  • PFR Proven products/practices are a great place to look for something new to try.
  • ‘Failures’ can be great learning experiences in the agriculture industry that allow us to uncover why something did or did not happen the way we thought it would.

These are just some of the agronomic options that can help you prepare for the upcoming planting season. Focus your time and energy on the one or two areas that need the most improvement and will provide the biggest impact on your farm. If you have any questions or want to discuss any of these topics further, please reach out to your local Beck’s Hybrids representative or PFR team member. Happy prepping season!

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Author: Jared Chester

Categories: PFR, PFR Reports


Jared Chester

Jared Chester

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