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Extension > Minnesota Crop News > April 2003

Monday, April 14, 2003

Corn population

D.R. Hicks, Extension Agronomist

Optimum Corn Population


Corn population should be between 29,000 and 31,000 plants per acre at harvest to produce the maximum grain yield. Grain yield is lower for populations below this. Table 1 gives the relationship between yield and harvest plant population. To achieve this harvest population, I suggest increasing the seeding rate by 15% when corn is planted prior to May 1 and 10% when corn is planted after May 1. Soil temperatures are lower in late April and there is a greater risk that some kernels nay not successfully germinate and emerge so one should increase the seeding rate to obtain the desired final stand to produce the maximum grain yield.

Tuesday, April 1, 2003

It's corn planting time

D.R. Hicks, Extension Agronomist

Remember last year? 22% of Minnesota's corn acres were planted in mid April. The seedbed was ideal and the soil temperature was above normal for mid April. But, it turned cold and stayed that way for 30 days. As a result seed laid in the ground for 30 to 40 days. The end result was uneven emerging plants and stands that were substantially lower than the desired plant populations. In addition, stands were not uniform in plant spacing. Yet - we had a record state average corn yield in Minnesota of 156 bushels per acre!
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