Beck's Blog

From Our Family Farm to Yours

25

May

2017

PFR Report

NITROGEN APPLICATIONS; HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF

Author: Jim Schwartz

Winston Churchill once said, “those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” History is for self-knowledge…after all. The only clues to the future that are offered to us are our past experiences. The value of history is that it teaches us how to improve based on our past. This lesson has never felt more applicable than it does this year.

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11

May

2017

PFR Report

NO BUSHEL LEFT BEHIND: CAN NITROGEN SEALERS MAXIMIZE YOUR YIELD?

Author: Jim Schwartz

With all the rain we have been experiencing throughout the Midwest, the number one thing on most farmer’s minds is replant or delayed planting decisions. Looking ahead to the rest of the season however, one important consideration is how much nitrogen (N) is available to our corn crop.

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28

Apr

2017

PFR Report

TO REPLANT OR NOT TO REPLANT, THAT IS THE QUESTION

Author: Jim Schwartz

It’s a tale as old as time. April rolls around, the sun comes out, and farmers across the Midwest hit the field. Spirits are high, corn is planted, and then…it happens. Hail. Near-freezing temperatures. Dropping soil temperatures.

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28

Apr

2017

PFR Report

Two Truths and a Lie: Nitrogen Edition

Author: Jim Schwartz

Let’s play a game. It’s called two truths and a lie. We’ll tell you three facts, two are true and one of them is not. Your goal is to determine which is false. Ready? Go.

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22

Apr

2017

PFR Report

The Importance of Planting Depth

Author: Jim Schwartz
Farmers are at the start of another challenging year with low commodity prices and shrinking margins. To succeed in a down market, we have to set ourselves up for success from the start. The best way to do that is to utilize all your tools and resources to their fullest potential. That means making sure your planter is ready for the field before it’s time to plant. But it also means planning for accurate plant spacing, seeding depth, and proper seed-to-soil contact as well.
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21

Apr

2017

PFR Report

IMPROVING CORN YIELDS WITH WEX

Author: Jim Schwartz

Planting has commenced and the corn markets are still down. That being said, many farmers are looking for ways to increase their corn yields without hurting their bottom line. One solution many have turned to is the use of a soil amendment product. Such products have shown to help corn crops develop deeper, strong root systems throughout the growing season and higher yields at harvest.

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17

Apr

2017

PFR Report

PLANTER BOX APPLIED ADDITIVES FOR IMPROVING PROFITS

Author: Jim Schwartz

The first step in maximizing yield potential is to establish a uniform, fast growing, and vigorous stand of corn with a strong nodal root system free from disease and/or insect pressure. The second is to jump start the growth of your crop. While stand establishment and early growth are key to high yields, they have become more difficult for farmers to achieve as we continue to plant earlier into cooler soils, especially in no-till fields.

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7

Apr

2017

PFR Report

STARTER ADDITIVES ON SOYBEANS: IS IT WORTH IT?

Author: Jim Schwartz

Applying a starter on soybeans is not something that most agronomists have typically recommended in the past. That’s because soybeans compensate for stand loss extremely well and make their own nitrogen, so why would a starter product pay?

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5

Apr

2017

PFR Report

THE VALUE OF STARTER FERTILIZERS ON SOYBEANS

Author: Jim Schwartz
Planting season is upon us and one thing that is on every farmers’ mind is how to maximize their return on investment (ROI) and increase yields this season. This is especially true for farmers who may plan to capitalize on soybean crops this year with corn at the market price it’s at.
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14

Mar

2017

PFR Report

Too Hot, Too Cold...Just Right

Author: Jim Schwartz

Once upon a time, there was a little girl named Goldilocks. She went for a walk in the forest and pretty soon, she came upon a house.  She knocked and, when no one answered, she walked right in. Why on earth a little girl was wandering alone in a forest, and breaking into a stranger’s home is anyone’s guess…but everyone knows what happens next. She tried some porridge, sat in some chairs, and then proceeded to lay down in these stranger’s beds until she found one that was “just right.”

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8

Mar

2017

PFR Report

Fight Your Feelings: Don't Let Emotions Control Your Crop Input Decisions

Author: Jim Schwartz

Emotions play a huge role in our lives and drive everything we do. They can impact our moods and drive our decision making. Our emotions can cause us to buy certain brands and leave others. That’s just the way it works.

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3

Mar

2017

PFR Report

Farmer's, Start Your Engines

Author: Jim Schwartz

Last week the Daytona 500 officially marked the beginning of NASCAR season. This iconic race is not only the biggest race of the season, but it is also super important for multiple reasons. The first, obvious bragging rights and a confetti shower for the crowned champion. Second is that the Daytona 500 sets the stage for the rest of the season. It’s important for the drivers to get off to a good start, not only when that green flag waves in Daytona, but also for the remainder of the season as they sprint towards that coveted cup.

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1

Mar

2017

PFR Report

PUTTING PRESSURE ON THOSE PESKY PESTS – CAPTURE VGR FIGHTS BACK

Author: Jim Schwartz

Much of the Midwest has experienced an extremely mild winter this year. While that is great for early planting preparations, mild winters also mean that there is an increased opportunity for soil-borne insects to thrive. One proactive solution to combat these pesky pests is the use of an in-furrow insecticide.

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28

Feb

2017

PFR Report

It's Time to Rethink Your High Populations

Author: Jim Schwartz
Row widths and planting population are two management practices that farmers have complete control over that are often considered to be crucial to increasing yield and return on investment (ROI.) That’s why Beck’s Practical Farm Research (PFR)® team continues to compare 15 in. and 30 in. rows at various planting populations in an attempt to determine the Economic Optimum Seeding Rate (EOSR) for each row width.
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23

Feb

2017

PFR Report

CHECK YOUR ROI POTENTIAL BEFORE MAKING THESE APPLICATIONS

Author: Jim Schwartz
Beck’s Practical Farm Research (PFR)® team has been evaluating two fungicide applications, Serenade® ASO and Headline®, on soybeans to determine their effects on yield and profitability when applied in-furrow.

While some sites have had more success with these in-furrow applications than others, the overarching consensus, based on Beck’s multi-year, multi-location research, is that the use of an in-furrow fungicide is not a recommended application.
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17

Feb

2017

PFR Report

Do Starter Additives Pay?

Author: Jim Schwartz

As farmers prepare for a new planting season, they seek new ways to improve seedling growth to maximize their yield potential. In-furrow technologies such as starter fertilizers, micronutrients, seed treatments, and fungicide and insecticide applications are one way to nourish seedlings at their most vulnerable state. And because these in-furrow technologies provide crops with nutrients and protection during those early growth stages, farmers can plant earlier knowing their crop is set up for season-long success.

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26

Jan

2017

PFR Report

A Closer Look at Closing Wheels

Author: Jim Schwartz

Planting season is sneaking up on us and we will be in the field before we know it. While farmers across the Midwest are excited to get their planters fired up, low commodity prices leave many searching for ways to cut costs while still increasing yields.

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26

May

2014

Looking Past The Numbers

What We Measure Tends To Improve

Author: Doug Clouser

“What we measure tends to improve.” Francis Beck regarded that quote as one of his favorites.

I am not sure who originally said this, or if this is even the original way in which it was stated. But what I have learned over my career here at Beck’s, and especially the last year or two, is that this is definitely a sentiment that I believe in.

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