Observation Mid-June 2013

On May 18, I observed my first flowers on our soybeans—planted May 1, 2013.

Soybeans are photo period sensitive plants, meaning that they transition from their vegetative phase to reproductive phase in response to this shortening of day length. Summer solstice, June 21, is normally the longest day in hours of daylight for the year.  After June 21, day length will decrease about 3 minutes per day.


  • Corn varieties are making a huge difference in plant height, root growth, nutrient uptake levels and plant color.
  • Those “wet areas,” which were continually wet, certainly have made a significant impact on this year’s crop.
    • The crop stands are reduced, plant height and development is retarded, and root development is restricted.
  • Soil compaction is omnipresent this year.
    • This compaction can be found as a sidewall compaction created by the planter unit, or the compaction can be found as a uniform compaction zone created by secondary spring tillage. In both cases, the largest impact is on root development and plant growth.
  • Planting depth for corn has been a major problem this year.
    • Those planting depths for corn of 1.25-to-1.5 inches are generally the worst. The 2.0 inch planting depths are looking significantly better. The greater planting depth is allowing the nodal root system to develop more dynamically.