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What to do with those “naked” corn acres

It seems that a very wet mid-May may cause some havoc when it comes to farmers missing the window of opportunity for a pre-emergent herbicide application. That means that there are a large number of acres of “naked” corn that will be anxiously awaiting some post-emergent help as it sprouts from highly saturated soils.

“Last week we experienced some really nice weather in my part of the state and corn that was planted a week or two ago is beginning to spike through,” said Chasitie Euler, a DuPont Pioneer Account Manager in the Northwest part of Ohio. “Many of those acres remain naked with no pre-emergent herbicide so that will definitely change many of my farmer’s plans.”

Euler recommends a couple of things to do before applying a post-emerge herbicide, including to look for the growth stage of the corn that is the largest to start and try to get into the field while the weeds are less than two inches tall.

“Farmers can also check with their retailer about some herbicides that are out there that can be applied post with 28%,” Euler said. “It is always a good idea to add some atrozine in the tank with the pre mix to control those small broadleaves. Also, when the corn is up and we go from the 80 degree days to these 60 degree days, that will add stress to the plant so be sure that you follow the recommendations for post applied corn.”

For the corn that was planting 2 to 3 weeks ago, the rain it received shortly after going into the ground may have saved it, but according to Rory Woods with Crop Production Services, the rain in the past week is putting the crop under some stress.

“With the stress the corn may be experiencing I highly recommend a root growth stimulator addition when applying a post-emergent herbicide,” Woods said. “We are going to have to prime the pump to get the corn and its root base to get up and get going again.”

CPS offers a product to do just that, called Radiate.

“If there is a silver lining in the situations of not getting a pre-emergent herbicide on the crop, it is the ability to get two things done at one time,” Woods said. “Using Radiate to with your post-emergent will take care of the weed pressure we’re seeing and get the corn growth back going for the corn.”

Woods has been over a good portion of corn country in Ohio and said that will the recent 80 degree days the state has had he is seeing things really coming along, including less saturated corn fields, wheat stands and, of course, weeds.

“If you ask me, things are starting to get out of hand,” Woods said. “The sooner we can get in the field and get on the weeds the better.”

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