If you’ll recall from last spring, we formulated a yield estimate based on the state’s planting progress according to the best phase of the moon to plant. According to two different almanacs, for planting corn in Ohio, the best days in 2015 were April 19, 20 and 23 through 25 and May 21, 22, and 28 through 31.
Here is how the USDA crop progress numbers went for corn planting this spring:
Week ending April 12: 1%
Week ending April 19: 1%
Week ending April 26: 2%
Week ending May 3: 15%
Week ending May 10: 55%
Week ending May 17: 77%
Week ending May 24: 87%
Week ending May 31: 93%
In April 1% of the corn crop was planted in the ideal time frame. In May 16% of the corn crop was planted at the best time. That is a total of 17% in the best conditions according to the moon. The most progress in a single week was 40% in the week ending May 10, which was the farthest removed single week from the optimal time — not good lunarally speaking.
To get a yield estimate, we assigned a five-bushel bonus for corn planted at the ideal time and a five-bushel decrease for corn planted during the week ending May 10. We considered everything else to be trend line. Yield projections based on the Ohio trend line corn yield using USDA National Ag Statistic Service numbers estimate a yield of 163.1 bushels per acre in 2015.
With this in mind, 17% of Ohio’s corn should have a five-bushel yield bump, 40% of the state’s corn should have a five-bushel yield penalty and 43% (the balance) should be trend line.
So, here is the math:
163.1 – 5 = 158.1 X 40 = 6,324
163.1 + 5 = 168.1 X 17 = 2,857.7
163.1 X 43 = +7,013.3
16,195/100 = 161.9 bushel corn average yield for Ohio according to the moon and some very unscientific assumptions.
It should be noted that our moon-based calculation is considerably closer to the 153-bushel average state corn yield released by the USDA earlier this month than our August in field crop scouting estimate.