2019 Was a Challenge, But 2020…
Jay Van Woerkom, Agronomy Sales Manager
While 2019 definitely had its challenges, 2020 is not what you’d call a “cake walk,” either. But, even in what might be called the weirdest year ever, our territory has been lucky on a number of fronts.
We were fortunate to get our crops in fast and in a timely manner this spring. Adequate rain in our territory was welcomed through July, but the faucet shut off in August and we found ourselves hoping for more while the crops were still in the growth phase.
We should also count ourselves very lucky in that our neighbors to the north were much drier and that the devastating hurricane-force winds of the derecho let up some before they hit our territory.
Even so, with two major wind events in 2020 that definitely did some damage, we are seeing some snapped and leaning corn as we’re moving through harvest.
August was the month that defined our yields. While we know our hybrids and varieties can handle dry conditions, the top end started to erode the longer we waited for rain.
Surprisingly, we were seeing pale colors show up significantly in soybeans, which we attribute to the lack of nutrient flow that would come with the soil moisture moving down to the roots and, especially, the lack of nitrogen fixation produced by the nodules on the root system.
To make a long story short, we knew we were losing bushels the longer we waited.
Fortunately, our yields usually surpass our expectations. This is in no small part due to your excellent management strategies, the soils with which we are blessed and the vast variety selection we have for our geography.
As harvest continues on, we’ll have greater insights into the 2020 crop year and look forward to working with you in planning your 2021 planting plans.
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