July 8, 2016

The Journey: Young Stages of Corn

Ever wonder what it takes to grow corn in Nebraska? In our new video series titled “The Journey”, Nebraska Corn Board's intern, Morgan Schilling, will follow Nebraska Corn throughout the 2016 growing season explaining everything from planting, growth stages of corn, soil nutrients, irrigation, harvest and more!  We hope this series provides some useful insight to the steps Nebraska farmers take to raise their corn crop every year.

Just joining us? Start at the beginning!
Episode 1:Series Introduction 
Episode 2: Planting Process of Corn

Episode 3: Young Stages of Corn
The third episode of The Journey covers the importance of soil nutrients to a growing corn plant as well as discussing what a grower needs to look out for at the corn plants current stage (V11-VT).

During this episode, I took a trip out to a cornfield located just south of Friend, Nebraska, which is farmed by Nebraska Corn Board director, David Bruntz. I had the chance to ask David a few questions about his corn crop and how he makes it grow to its full potential.

First, we discussed the importance of nutrients to a corn plant.  David said that he has his field’s soil sampled about once every three years.  He then takes the results from the soil test report and utilizes them to choose what nutrients to apply and how much of them to apply.

“In the fall we apply about 180 lbs of anhydrous ammonia and then in the spring when we’re planting we put on some nitrogen with the planter. When the corn gets about a foot tall we put more nitrogen on at that time with either a liquid product or a dry encapsulated product,” said Bruntz.

David and I then visited about threats and things he looks out for in his corn crop this time of year.  At the time of the interview, David’s corn was in the V11-V13 stage.

“We watch out for any funguses that are moving into the area and we’re just pre-tassel right now so we’re watching for if we need to apply any fungicide. Most of our new hybrids are resistant to a lot of corn borer, rootworm and the beetles and things like that. A lot of that resistance you buy with the genetics,” stated Bruntz.

The corn growing process is much more in depth than just planting the seed and harvesting the crop. There are many things that go into producing a profitable crop, such as soil nutrient supplementation. Growers also need to watch out for any threats to their crop that may come up such as funguses or pests that have the potential to hurt the corn plant.

Watch the full episode below...

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