A review of 2016 growing conditions across Nebraska sheds light on a number of factors that may have contributed to reduced yield in individual fields. An understanding of these factors may be helpful when selecting seed for 2017.
Nebraska soybean producers are being asked to answer a survey about their soybean fields and contribute to a benchmark study of current soybean production in Nebraska. Researchers from 10 north central states, including Nebraska, are collecting the data to identify factors that may be impeding growers from reaching full yield. See what they've learned in the first two years of the study and how they hope to use the information.
USDA NASS estimated 26% of Nebraska’s corn acres had been planted as of May 2, well behind last year’s pace of 45% and slightly behind the five-year average of 31%. The pace is undoubtedly being affected by the amount of precipitation across the state and the wet field conditions (Figures 1 and 2).
Soil conditions, the weather forecast, freeze risk and projected days needed for planting are all part of the decision as to when to get into the field. These factors can be highly variable from year to year and it can be challenging to know when we will reach, and maintain, soil temperatures conducive to proper crop germination.