Tassels, Insects, and Weeds: In-Season Crop Management

tasseled corn late July

Tasseling. About this time of year growers start to wonder if their crops will make it to maturity before the first frost. The tassels will tell, according to Kevin Carlson, Federated's senior agronomist.

Logically, earlier corn tassels earlier, and later corn tassels later, but all corn takes approximately 60 days from tassel to black layer. "So, if we back up 60 days from Sept. 25th [the average date of first frost in central MN and western WI], that brings us to tassel by July 25," said Carlson. "We will have some that are tasseling," he added, and some corn that was planted later will need a late frost.

Aphids. The aphid population continues to build, Carlson noted. "We haven't seen anything alarming but we are still at relatively low levels. We have seen some hot spots at higher levels [of aphids]."

Spider Mites. "We have seen some spider mites. They have moved out of the grasses into the soybean fields," Carlson said.

Talk to your Federated Agronomist about threshold levels for either aphids or spider mites, and discuss potential treatment options.

Weed Resistance. No one is immune any longer. Waterhemp continues to spread to new fields and new farms, "even more," said Carlson. Next month's Discovery Plots (see below) will include conversations on genetics and traits in soybeans and corn that aim to address control these most resistant -- and persistent -- weeds.