Early June 2014


Many of the cornfields are looking great. However, there are some cornfields that have significant problems.

The following is a summary listing the various factors that could be creating the growth and nutrient uptake problems.


  • The corn plant could be transitioning from the kernel supplying its nutrient requirements to one that relies on the nodal root system—secondary roots—for its nutrients and water.
  • Soil compaction could be limiting root development, growth, and nutrient uptake.
  • Shallow planting which could have caused the secondary root system to be placed too close to the soil surface.
  • Cold weather and dry soils can be limiting overall root growth and nutrient uptake.
  • Tillage that is diagonal to the direction of planting could be showing if the soil was worked too wet.
  • Direction of last year’s soybean harvest could be showing where the crop residue wasn’t spread across the entire harvested area.