Five Questions to Ask Before Planting

Modern seed monitors now track seed spacing, seed depth, skips, doubles and other planting issues that formerly required digging. ( Aimee Cope )

For those in areas where harvest ran long, and field work ran short or didn’t happen, or for those who might have other planting delays you might have questions that need answered before planting.

Syngenta agronomist offer these five questions and answers:

Q. At what point should I consider swapping my full-season hybrids/varieties for shorter-season hybrids/varieties?

A. Switching from a full-season product to a shorter one can mean giving up the yield potential that such a hybrid/variety provides, so any decisions regarding changing to a lesser maturity group should be carefully considered.


Q. Is it better to plant early in wet conditions, or is it better to wait until the wet conditions subside and plant later?

A. While many farmers want to plant as early as possible, it’s important to wait for field conditions to be right to avoid as much compaction as possible.


Q. Is my soybean seed protected against early-season pests and diseases?

A. It’s no secret that wet, cool soils inhibit germination and stand establishment. Additionally, given the known connection between these conditions and the presence of Soybean Cyst Nematode/Sudden Death Syndrome, we may see heightened SCN/SDS pressure this season.


Q. What do I need to look for in a herbicide program this year?

A. It’s important to be aware that recent flooding may have transported weed seeds. Additionally, soils may be slow to warm up, resulting in delayed weed emergence. Meanwhile, there’s a stopping point for applying many herbicides – generally, after corn gets to be 30” tall, or when soybeans reach R2 or R3.


Q. What can I do to prepare for potentially high disease pressure?

A. Since wet weather combined with warm temperatures increases the risk of disease infection, farmers need to be prepared for diseases like tar spot and white mold in 2019.