August 19, 2008


Immature corn, soy seen in parts of Ohio



The effects of a wet spring and late planting have produced immature soy and corn in several Ohio fields, observers of a media and farmer tour said Monday (August 18). 


One route, running northeast of Delaware, Ohio, found some soy plants that still had blossoms and corn that in one case was still pollinating.


Roger Bernard, director of the eastern tour leg and Pro Farmer news editor, said the theme on the route so far was yield "potential."


"We have seen a crop that is consistently behind, and definitely behind what it was last year," Bernard said.


Scouts emerged from one corn field in Marion County, Ohio, coated in pollen. Bernard said it was the first time in five years on the tour that he had encountered a field still in pollination.


But scouts on a couple other routes reported better development, with corn in the dent or dough stages, Bernard said.


Sampled corn fields had yields ranging from 65 to 160 bushels per acre.


Tour scouts, that include industry representatives, farmers and members of the media, found dry conditions but little disease pressure.


A veteran tour scout and Iowa farmer noted short soy plants with widely varying pod counts.


Some soy fields showed some leaf damage from a Japanese leaf beetle. The veteran Iowa scout said the damage wasn't significant, but could pose a problem eventually because the crop was behind.


The average pod count in seven fields was 650.


The route will enter Indiana Monday afternoon east of Fort Wayne before heading south toward Indianapolis.


The US Department of Agriculture estimates Ohio's average corn yield at 160 bushels per acre, up from last year's total of 150 bushels per acre. Ohio's total corn production is estimated by the USDA at 504.0 million bushels, down from 541.5 million bushels in 2007. Harvested acreage is pegged at 3.150 million acres, down from 3.610 million in 2007.


As for soy, the USDA estimated that yield will be 45 bushels/acre, down from last year's 47, with production in 2008 reaching 206.1 million bushels, up from 194.1 million in the previous year due to higher planted acreage. Harvested area for soy is seen at 4.58 million acres, up from 4.130 million in 2007.

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