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BTR_Estimating Yields of Storm Damaged Corn

BTR_Estimating Yields of Storm Damaged Corn

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Published by Katie L. Elgin

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Published by: Katie L. Elgin on Aug 02, 2011
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08/02/2011

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Between the Rows
Page 1
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ESTIMATING YIELDS OF STORM DAMAGED CORN
July 29, 2011ISSUE:
15
Background
Many Midwest corn felds have been impacted by severeweather conditions this growing season. Early seasonwet and cool conditions reduced population levels anddelayed parts o felds that had standing water. Later stormsimpacted felds with rain and heavy winds that caused rootlodging and green snap to occur. Hail is generally a yearlyoccurrence in many parts o our corn growing area and cancause minor to devastating impact on corn perormance,depending on timing and severity o the hail storm. Heatand drought in some areas also cause growers to haveperormance concerns. All o these weather actors canimpact plant population and fnal yield.
Current Conditions
During August, many growers routinely evaluate feldsand make yield estimates either or corn storage needs oror marketing purposes. Also, felds with reduced standsor severe root lodging cause growers concern aboutperormance which can create interest in estimating yields.Most inormation on corn perormance indicates corn hasgreat ability to compensate or lower plant populations.Generally the optimum plant population is not one number,but a range o populations where optimum perormancecan be expected. When growing conditions induce standreductions, there is also yield reduction that can result. Thisyield reduction is not directly proportional to the standreduction. Remaining plants each can increase the numbero kernels per plant and partially compensate or missingplants. The crop insurance industry routinely estimates the yieldloss in hail damaged felds based on stand counts and stageo growth that damaged occurred. This estimate is basedon the US appraisal method as outlined in the USDA CornLoss Adjustment Standard Handbook. Yield reductions romstand loss are well documented, but the insurance industryassumes when damage occurs ater V8, the remaining plantscannot compensate or lost plants.Recent research reported in Crop Science Journal, whichwas unded by the National Crop Insurance Serviceand conducted cooperatively by IL, IA, and OH, hasdemonstrated that corn can still compensate or standreductions through the V15 stage o growth. Their researchwas designed to evaluate the impact stand reductions hadon perormance at various stages o growth and to includeuniorm plant loss (uniorm plant spacing) compared touneven plant loss (random spacing). Their conclusions showseveral important actors that impact how we may estimatehybrid perormance.1. Yield reduction rom stand loss appears not to beaected by uniorm stand loss compared to unevenstand loss.2. Stand reduction at earlier stages o growth has a smallerimpact on yield compared to stand reductions at laterstages o growth. The earlier the damage occurs, thegreater the recovery can be.3. Data rom stand reductions at V11 and V15 showed yieldcompensation still occurred in the orm o per plantyield increases in the remaining plants in response toa reduction in competition (increased kernel number/plant).4. When the current U.S. appraisal method was comparedto the study data, it was demonstrated that the U.S.evaluation method underestimated yields by 1-9% at theearlier stages o growth (V5 and V8). But the U.S. estimateor yield also underestimated yield at the later stages o damage (V11 and V15) by 10-24%.5.
 This study does not account for other types of damage thatoccurs with hail like shredded leaves (defoliation), bruisedstalks, stalk breakage, damaged ears, or damaged whorlsthat may make regrowth or recovery dicult (leaf wrap).
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