Source: Purdue University

Conventional wisdom says that the prime planting window for maximum corn yields in much of Indiana opens about April 20 and closes about May 10. This "window" typically opens about one week later across the northern tier of Indiana counties (cooler conditions) and about one week earlier across the southern tier of Indiana counties (warmer conditions).

Very little corn, if any, has been planted in Indiana to date. By itself, this is not much cause for concern because typically only a very small percentage of acres are ever planted by this date in Indiana. However, the specter of delayed planting is clearly on the horizon because little other spring fieldwork has been completed due to the frequent and sometimes excessive rainfall in recent weeks. For many growers, tillage operations, herbicide applications, and nitrogen fertilizer applications must be completed first before they can consider planting their crops.

What are the consequences of a delayed start to planting? How important a predictor of statewide corn yield is planting date anyway? Does late planting in and of itself guarantee lower than normal yields? Interestingly, the planting date effect on statewide average corn yield is not clearcut.

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