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Extension > Minnesota Crop News > September 2004

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Examining growing season climates in south-central Minnesota

Mark Seeley, Extension Climatologist

As we have been hearing the cold growing season has exposed this year's corn and soybean crops to higher risk of frost damage and more importantly the likelihood of not maturing and being at high moisture content for harvest. Some have referred to their experiences with other similar growing seasons. These are climatically hard to find and not very many in number.

Please find below the ten coldest growing seasons at the University of Minnesota Southern Research and Outreach Center in Waseca, MN. This ranking is based on Growing Degree Days (GDD base 50/86 F) for the May 1 to August 30 period. Also listed are the following September GDD values and the first frost date of the designated year. The parenthetical values are the long term averages.

Thursday, September 2, 2004

The corn crop - frost and maturity

D. R. Hicks, Dept. of Agronomy and Plant Genetics, University of Minnesota

Many corn fields over Minnesota lost some leaves to the frost of Saturday morning August 21. But, except for low areas in some fields, there remains green leaves that can continue to add grain yield. This note gives an update of corn development as the crop moves, albeit slowly, toward maturity. And since some of the crop is not likely to reach normal maturity, this newsletter also gives information regarding the effect of frost before maturity on corn grain yield, dry down, and grain quality.

Corn test weight changes during drying

Dale R. Hicks, Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics, University of Minnesota

Some of this year's corn crop will not reach normal maturity before the next killing freeze. As a result, maximum yield potential and normal test weights will not occur. Test weights in the low 50's(lb/bu) may be common in some areas the state, especially in the northern half of MN. Test weight can increase with artificial drying if the drying temperature is maintained below 180°F.
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