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Friday, Jan. 20, 2017

Great opportunity to analyze your 2010 nitrogen program

Posted Friday, August 27, 2010, at 4:35 PM

If you are wondering how well your nitrogen management program worked during 2010, there is an opportunity to assess your program with the Stalk Nitrate Test. Research from Iowa and other states has calibrated nitrate concentration in the corn stalk with the nitrogen status of the harvested corn crop. Nitrate concentrations above 2000 parts per million are indicative of a crop that had excess nitrogen: concentrations below 700 parts per million are indicative of plants that had marginal nitrogen supply (250-700 parts per million) or were clearly nitrogen deficient (less than 250 parts per million.

For the second year, MU Soil Testing Lab and Dr. John Lory will be teaming together to run the Missouri Corn Stalk Nitrate Challenge. They will analyze up to 10 samples at the MU lab from any Missouri farm at no cost if you submit the requested information when you submit samples.

Typical cost for this analysis is $12 per sample. This is a great opportunity to analyze your nitrogen management program. There is more information and forms available at the Corn Stalk Nitrate Challenge website at http://nmplanner.missouri.edu/tools/Stal... .

The window for collecting samples is from milk stage to up to three weeks after black layer formation. Use a set of hand shears or loppers to remove an eight-inch segment of corn stalk from the corn plant. The top cut should be 14 inches above the ground and the bottom cut should be six inches above the ground. Get a stalk segment from at least 15 randomly selected plants from the field or subfield you are sampling. Place the samples in a paper bag for shipping to the lab for analysis. Do not freeze the samples. Samples held more than 24 hours before shipping should be refrigerated.

If you are going to plant wheat this fall, you may want to book your seed needs sooner than later. With the reduced wheat harvested in 2010 and some problems with seed quality, the amount of high quality seed may be limited. Initial reports from both the Missouri Seed Improvement association and the Missouri Department of Agriculture indicate poor germination test results on wheat from this year's crop. Fusarium head blight or scab was widespread, and in some fields severe this season. Scab can decrease germination and if seed is from an infected field a germination test is important.

Management of Fusarium seedling blight is through the planting of disease free seed or a combination of thoroughly cleaning the seed lot, having a germination test run, adjusting the seeding rate to compensate for germination rate and using a fungicide seed treatment effective against seed-borne Fusarium or scab.

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As our local University of Missouri Agronomy Extension Specialist, Crook has been writing a column for the print edition Agriculture page for the past three years and we will now be sharing it on our web version. Crook has a bachelor and masters degree in agronomy from University of Missouri and received his doctorate in Agronomy from Kansas State University. He was in soybean variety development research for 22 years for various seed companies and has been Saline County's agronomy specialist for 10 years.
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