Preliminary Day Two Observations from Tour Leader

Posted on 03/09/2017 10:21 AM

Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour scouts left Grand Island en route to Nebraska City, Nebraska. Scouts on the eastern leg began their day in Fishers, Indiana, and scouted fields on their way to Bloomington, Illinois. Tonight, official results from Nebraska and Indiana will be released.

Western Tour Consultant Emily Carolan and her team made stops in Hamilton, York, Holt, Butler and Saunders counties in Nebraska Tuesday. Corn yield for those stops averaged 160.3 bu. per acre, while the average bean pod count in 3' x 3' areas was 1,134.2 pods. Corn stands weren't as good, nor grain inches as long as seen last year, she says. The corn crop was not as far along as those seen in South Dakota Monday, which is somewhat more favorable to production prospects. These conditions seemingly reflect the extended spring planting period, with cooler and wet conditions leaving seeds sitting in the ground for a longer time. Beans in the region seemed to be somewhat more affected by increased disease and weed pressure, but generally in better shape than corn, Carolan states.

Brent Judisch of Cedar Falls, Iowa, reports he and his cohort worked their way from Northeast to Southeast Nebraska, making 10 stops in the process. They found corn yields averaging 157 bu. per acre and the mean soybean pod count in a 3' x 3' area at 1,180. The corn results were seen as disappointing, especially those on irrigated ground, he notes. Some yield estimates were very good, with few real disease problems, although there were instances of green snap. Overall, ear counts were 8%-12% were below year-ago, with diminished stands playing a significant role in the decline. Some stalks also were bare of ears. Judisch also blames wet, cool weather for the disappointing results.

Pro Farmer Editor and eastern Tour Leader Brian Grete and his team made 8 stops in Indiana crop districts 5, 4 and 1, then another 3 in Illinois district 5. They found Indiana corn yield results ranging from 129.1 bushels to 235.4 bushels/acre. The average came in at 182.4 bushels. Meanwhile, soybean pod counts in Indiana averaged 1,166.5 pods. As expected, Grete saw conditions improving as they moved farther west. As for the corn data, those that came in toward the lower end of the range had issues with grain length and diminished ear counts. There were some foliar issues due to weather stress, with a few ears starting to hang. The Illinois results were clearly better, with the average corn yield reaching 197.8 bu. per acre. The Illinois pod counts, Grete says ranged from 630.6 to 2,142.19 per 3' x 3' plot area, with resulting mean coming in at 1,295.5. The Illinois results were variable as soybeans suffered a bit from weed pressure.

Eastern Tour Consultant Mark Bernard and his team of scouts made four stops in Indiana crop district 1 and estimated corn yields for them at 170.0 bushels per acre. They found average soybean pod counts in 3-foot row section at 1500. They were in an area with a significant amount of irrigation, but all their stops were made on dryland acres. Soybeans were seen as a bit disappointing, Bernard says, while the corn is dealing with relative heat and dryness. They then moved on to Illinois district 5, with corn yields topping 200 bu. per acre in two fields. Soybean pod counts ranged from 1,100 to 1,200 in three-foot row sections. Although the Illinois numbers were better than those seen to the east, they seemed a bit more variable, Bernard notes. They saw one Ford county corn field suffering from green snap and a few instances of SDS and brown stem rot.

Follow #pftour16 Leaders Chip Flory and Brian Grete, as well as Consultants Mark Bernard and Emily Carolan on Twitter. Follow Julianne Johnston for official Tour results.

Additional Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour information is available on



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