Walk fields before and during harvest

Seed Consultants Product Manager Matt Hutcheson is encouraging growers to scout fields before and during harvest.  

“You can still determine what’s going on in your fields by digging if you have some compaction that needs to be resolved. If you have diseases, whether it’s northern corn leaf blight or tar spot, you can pick corn hybrids or soybean varieties that have better tolerance for the next year,” he says. “If you have issues that are environmental like ear molds, you may have vomitoxin issues then that gives you chance a to determine which grain may need to be segregated or gives you a heads up before you take that grain to the elevator.”

He tells Brownfield prioritizing fields for harvest is a critical part of scouting.

“If you’re seeing evidence of nitrogen deficiency or there’s a possibility of the plant cannibalizing the stalk to fill out the ear, you’re probably going to have standability issues and that’s a field you’d want to get to first,” he says. “Also, if you happen to notice ear rot, it’s always best to harvest those fields first and get them dried and in the bin if you need to store them. That prevents the ear mold from continuing to develop. If you leave those fields to stand until the end of harvest, then your issues are only going to get worse.”

Brownfield spoke with Hutcheson during the 2022 Farm Science Review.

Audio: Matt Hutcheson

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