Final results for the entire eastern leg of this year’s
Farm Journal Midwest Crop Tour for Indiana.
Corn – 171.23 Bushels to the Acre
Soybeans – 1168.78 Pods in a 3 x 3 foot square
Today is my annual ride along with Pro Farmer Editor Brian Grete. We have gotten to know each other pretty well over the past 6 years and he does an incredible job making sure this Eastern Leg of the Farm Journal Midwest Crop Tour goes off without a hitch. We have had many one-of-a-kind experiences over the year, including a great hole-in-the-wall BBQ joint (that I hope is still open and on our route today), doing the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in the middle of a corn field and almost getting killed by a train. Okay, so it wasn’t really that close but the story gets better every year. We have scouts from England and Rotterdam with us today.
This is our last stop of the day in McLean County, Illinois and this should be some of the best numbers we will see on the tour because the soil is prime here, but those high numbers will not be seen this year. The ear count was small and the ears continue to shorter than what we have seen earlier in the day. As you can see by the picture, this field was crispy and firing heavily well inside of the field. Our yield estimate is only at 146 bushels. Soybeans here were very level and looked like carpet. Very clean and very healthy. This pod county was 1248, which was just below our route’s Illinois average.
Livingston County, Illnois for this stop and ear population was very low here, but the outstanding ears will give us a yield of 186 for this field. Soybeans were very healthy in the field across the road and each plant had a least 50 pods on them. Pod count here was 1344 in a 3 foot square.
After a great lunch at The Humble Hog in Paxton, Illinois we are back at it in Ford County, Illinois where we saw our first field dicamba drift damage. It was mostly on the outer rows and the beans are looking alright for now. Our pod count in a 3 x 3 foot square was 1656. The corn was pretty standard for what we have seen today, with little disease pressure. Our samples had a 14 around average for our yield calc was 161.
We are seeing more evidence of a dry growing season here. Zipper ears and a low population will hurt this field this year. There is a heavy aphid infestation here as well as seen on one of the scout’s shirt. This farmer replanted in some areas of the field we were in but none of our sample ears came from those later planted stalks. Our yield number here is 142. Soybeans were podded well and 1194 is our 3 x 3 pod count here.
We wondered if this corn was firing badly or just wrapping up production and the answer was a little of both. We talked with some area growers here in Iroquois County, Illinois and the big rain they got over the last day was too much too late. Corn here is showing what they told us. Things were dry here early in the growing season and corn and soybeans. This caused corn ear pops to be very low and even though these ears were impressive, there just weren’t enough of them here. Our yield for this corn was 92 bushels to the acre. Soybeans were pretty decent and the plants had many pods on a bushy stalk. I did notice quite a few 2-bean pods which would also be due to lack of rain during a critical part of the growing stage. Our pod count was 1382 in a 3 foot square.
This will be our last county in Indiana and we will do two stops here in Warren County. A ton of rain has fallen here as we are seeing standing water everywhere. Hearing up to 5 inches in the last 24 hours in this area. This field gave us a run for our money with 15 inch rows which, on a rainy day with muddy shoes is a whole lot of fun. Ear count was solid for narrow rows and this field was close to denting. This will be the highest yield I have seen on tour at 226 bushels per acre. Soybeans were better here than we have seen all day. Podded early and often here and the rain we are seeing today will only benefit. Our 3 x 3 square foot pod count was 1236.
Once again, we are seeing decent ear counts in corn fields in this part of Indiana. We are in Tippecanoe County currently. The lengths of the ears and tip back are not helping get yield numbers to where farmers here are used to. Our guess here is at 151. The beans were very young and planted into wheat stubble. This will bring the pod count down dramatically, but there is still lots of potential in this field and this rain is certainly helping here. Our pod count was 343 in a 3 x 3 square.
Still in Clinton County, Indiana and stalk quality was a major issue here. Some downed trees in the area is telling us that some wind has come through here recently and this corn field could not handle it. If another strong system gets here more stalks will topple as a result. Our yield calc here is 133. The soybeans were very wavy here, but the pod count was the highest we have seen so far on Day 2. Rain is falling here and the soils were very wet. That gave us a better look at the root system. Our 3 by 3 foot area pod count was 998.
This corn is farther along and starting to dent here in Clinton County, Indiana. These ears were heavier than I have seen so far on tour and every ear was 16 around and our yield was at 210 bushel to the acre. Soybeans had a few skips in the area of the field we ended up in and pod count was just okay per plant we sampled. Our pod count in a 3 x 3 square was 768.
Took a while to get out of town and find some fields in this highly developed part of Hamilton County, Indiana. This corn still have some time to get to dent, but the uniformity here was noticeable compared to yesterday and skips were rare here. Ear length hurt here with one at 4 1/2 inches long. Our yield guess is 155. Soybeans were healthy with very little disease or insect pressure. Dirt here was dry and although we have rain on the radar all around us, we are not wet yet. Our pod count in a 3 by 3 foot square was 929.