Cooler August temperatures boosting corn kernel fill in Illinois

A Golden Harvest agronomist says recent cooler temperatures across most of Illinois will boost corn kernel fill.  

Brad Koch, who covers west central Illinois, tells Brownfield the lower nighttime temperatures are, the less sugar the plant burns.

“In fact, it can get to a point where you literally almost get 100% net photosynthesis going into the kernel fill.”

He says kernel weight is a huge component of corn yield.

“I have been telling my growers to reduce the number of kernels it’s going to take to create a bushel by about 5,000 to 10,000 kernels per bushel because of these cool nights.”

Koch says warmer nighttime temperatures during pollination this year decreased kernel counts but he believes the kernel weight will make up for that, resulting in an above average corn crop overall.

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