MIDWEST: What’s worse than missing out on an April planting date for your corn? Waiting for a May planting date and then planting into soils that are too wet.
It’s frustrating to not have much corn in the ground, but it’s usually better to not plant than it is to mud it in. You really only get one good chance to plant each field, so it’s worth waiting and doing it right.
The soil must be dry enough for your planter to open a slot, drop the seed and close the slot. Failure to close the slot is where too many problems begin. You get poor seed-soil contact for erratic germination, problems with insects and slugs, opportunities for too much exposure to herbicide and a whole slew of problems associated with poor root establishment.
Please take the time to evaluate each field individually, even if you think it was planted “just right.” If it’s not dry enough to kick up a little dust with the planter, chances are it’s not quite dry enough to be planting. I recommend waiting to avoid sacrificing crop quality and yield potential.
Reporting from Churubusco, IN