Corn sets FIRST record in dry year

Corn units FIRST document in dry yr


In a yr dominated by headlines of drought, some fields have been setting information.

The Farmer’s Impartial Analysis of Seed Applied sciences (FIRST) corn websites noticed two plots submit greater than 300 bushels to the acre in 2023, led by the location in Postville, Iowa, ending with a 314.4 bushel per acre common — the best ever seen in a FIRST yield trial.

The location in Thomson, Illinois, was the opposite excessive yielder with a median of 305 bu./acre and is the second-highest common in FIRST yield exams. That is the twenty seventh yr for these trials.

“Just about all of the corn went into the bottom in superb circumstances,” mentioned Jason Beyers, FIRST supervisor who oversaw each the high-yield fields in northeast Iowa and northwest Illinois. “Soil circumstances and climate have been extraordinarily favorable. Emergence was phenomenal.”

The general efficiency of hybrids all through the area was robust, Beyers mentioned, with most individuals getting better-than-expected yields in corn. He mentioned that could be a testomony to how a lot genetics have improved.

“They’re breeding them higher for the intense circumstances we’re seeing,” he mentioned.

Whereas Postville took the document, Iowa yields have been robust all through the state. In western Iowa, the take a look at web site in Webb completed at 271.1 bushels per acre, main the area, whereas Lineville led southern Iowa with a 254.5 bushel common. Of the 38 Iowa websites, 12 completed above 250 bushels per acre and 7 completed under 200.

“After I look again at our climate studies, I feel a few of the places simply caught an honest sufficient bathe proper when issues began filling,” mentioned Randy Meinsma, supervisor for the southern Iowa plots. “That’s what saved it. Each farmer I talked to was actually stunned at what yields they have been seeing.”

Meinsma mentioned take a look at weights are turning out to be somewhat low, which offsets a few of the larger yields.

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“You’d wish to see a greater take a look at weight,” he mentioned. “Whenever you fill a truck filled with corn you might be hoping you could have a complete lot in there. Then you definately discover out the take a look at weight is low sufficient it doesn’t actually present the bushels you thought it could.”

In Illinois, a lot of the top- yielding websites have been towards the northern half of the state.

Malta, in north central Illinois, was second within the state at 294.6 bu./acre, and Winnebago, close to the Wisconsin border, posted at 286.1 bu./acre.

Yields have been spottier towards the south, with solely two websites under Springfield posting greater than 250 bushels per acre, led by Flora with 256.6. Of the 27 Illinois websites, solely three posted yields under 200 bu./acre.

Nathan Roux, who manages fields all through Central Illinois, mentioned yields general have been shocking.

“That’s in a great way, too,” he mentioned. “Some guys thought they have been solely going to get 190 or so, however ended up with 225 and 230. Getting these averages throughout a couple-hundred-acre discipline after not getting rain for practically 50 days straight, it positively is shocking.”

Plots in Missouri have been led by St. Joseph’s 257.7 bu./acre — the one web site to rise over 250 within the state’s 10 exams. Dry, heat climate made it troublesome for most of the exams to excel, however supervisor Invoice Schelp mentioned the shortage of moisture at planting did assist set up roots and get the crop by the season.

“Dry climate and warmth have been dominant this season,” he mentioned. “It was most likely higher it was dry versus a moist spring so the roots developed deeply. They wanted moisture from the beginning. The plot in Cairo (157.6 bu./acre) obtained 8 inches complete by Aug. 1, however one other 10 inches of rain fell earlier than the top of August. Yields within the surrounding fields have been variable.”

The managers thanked the farmers who helped with this yr’s trials and mentioned they’re already wanting ahead to 2024 after this yr’s robust season.

Full outcomes from this yr’s FIRST exams might be discovered on-line at


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