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Agronomic Crops Network

Ohio State University Extension


New ANR Factsheet Summarizing Corn Response to Long-Term Weather Patterns

With corn planting nearly completed and most fields emerged across the state, active growth is now taking place (Figure 1). The current forecast shows a lack of rain for the week together with warm temperatures which can be conducive to crop stress in some fields. It is expected (and has been observed) that many fields are still okay given good soil moisture levels below the surface from past rains. The corn water use rate before the 12-leaf stage (<V12) is estimated at <0.20 inches per day. Water use increases after the V12 stage and is highest at the flowering/silking stage (R1). Learn more about corn water use here!

Figure 1. Active corn growth in fields located in Northwest Ohio at about the V6-V8 stage. Pictures taken on June 13, 2024.

Environmental conditions across regions vary on spatial and temporal scales, and can sometimes include unusual phenomena like dry periods. Now that corn planting activities are completed for the state, it is important to assess how corn growth and yield can be affected by these weather patterns. As climatic conditions continue to shift, weather variations at the different growth stages of corn can affect the crop’s productivity positively or negatively. A new ANR Factsheet reviews the potential effects of these conditions, introduces opportunities to address these challenges through management decisions, and outlines challenges associated with their implementation. Three main areas covered include:

  • Drought and High Temperatures
  • Solar Radiation and Light Availability
  • Variability in Heat Unit Accumulation

Heat and drought conditions negatively affect crop yields but changes like improved solar brightening can increase yield potential. Moreover, modest increases in temperatures can increase growing degree day accumulation, which positively affects crop growth, development, and yields. The shift toward longer growing seasons provides corn growers, particularly in the northern United States, with an opportunity to increase yield and profits by selecting hybrids with later relative maturities or greater growing degree day requirements.

Access the resource below for a detailed and complete description of these long-term weather patterns, their impact, and potential mitigation strategies in corn:

Corn Response to Long-Term Weather Stressors ANR-0150:   

Crop Observation and Recommendation Network

C.O.R.N. Newsletter is a summary of crop observations, related information, and appropriate recommendations for Ohio crop producers and industry. C.O.R.N. Newsletter is produced by the Ohio State University Extension Agronomy Team, state specialists at The Ohio State University and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC). C.O.R.N. Newsletter questions are directed to Extension and OARDC state specialists and associates at Ohio State.