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Five factors corn growers should consider before planting

March 7, 2016

Spring is near, and so is planting. As corn growers approach this critical time of the year, there is always a lot to consider. Here are some top factors to keep in mind to help start the season strong:

  • The right hybrids. For growers still making their final seed purchasing decisions, remember that soil type, pest pressures and other environmental concerns should all be taken into consideration. Even with excellent season-long crop management, corn will not yield at its full potential if the hybrid isn’t right for the field. Syngenta offers a range of Golden Harvest® Corn hybrids featuring strong genetics and unique traits and technologies to help growers get the most out of their acres.
  • Soil temperatures. Many things, such as amount of crop residue and soil type, influence soil temperature. Growers should take readings in multiple spots during mid-morning to get the most accurate results. Planting can start as long as soil temperatures are near 50 degrees and the weather outlook calls for warmer weather ahead.
  • Soil dryness. Soil that is too wet can cause problems with the planter’s ability to open and close the seed slot. Unclosed slots can result in sidewall compaction, pest problems, poor root establishment and opportunities for overexposure to herbicide.
  • Plant spacing. Plant spacing plays an important factor in maximizing yields. Improper plant spacing and spacing variability can cause yield losses up to 4.7 bushels per acre for every inch increase in the standard deviation from plant to plant. To prevent this, growers should check their planters before they start. Poorly maintained meters, wrong meter discs for the size of the seed, worn chains, clutches, seed tubes and planting too fast can all contribute to plant spacing variability.
  • A pre-emergence herbicide. Weeds compete with corn for valuable water and light resources, which can ultimately affect corn yield. To control early emerging weeds, use a properly timed pre-emergence herbicide application at full rate to provide lasting weed control long into the season. Acuron® corn herbicide contains four active ingredients and three modes of action that help it defeat tough weeds. Bicyclopyrone helps Acuron deliver a step change in weed management with improved and more consistent control of tough weeds.

Contact your local Syngenta representative for more information. Stay informed all season long – sign up for the Know More, Grow More Digest to receive twice-monthly agronomic e-mail updates pertinent to your area.

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©2016 Syngenta. Important: Always read and follow label instructions. Some products may not be registered for sale or use in all states or counties. Please check with your local extension service to ensure registration status. Acuron is a Restricted Use Pesticide. Acuron®, Golden Harvest® and the Syngenta logo are registered trademarks of a Syngenta Group Company.

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