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Ohio State University Extension


C.O.R.N. Newsletter 2006-39

Dates Covered: 
November 21, 2006 - December 5, 2006
Greg LaBarge

A Vote For No More Harvest Seasons LIke 2006

Authors: Jim Beuerlein

To my memory, 2006 has been the latest, coldest, and wettest harvest season of the last 40 years. We don’t want another 2006 fall weather pattern, but we will probably get one sometime, so how do we guard against a late and wet harvest season?

The chart below shows the effect of relative maturity on the yield of soybeans grown in narrow rows and indicates that we can get really good yields out of the early maturing soybean varieties. Planting some early varieties enables an earlier start on harvest, getting wheat planted on time, and stretches out the harvest season so we can harvest fields as soon as they dry down, which makes for higher test weights and better grain quality.

The table shows how to move the harvest season earlier and extend it longer by planting some early maturing varieties at the beginning of the planting season. The yield data in the chart shows the relative yield when all the varieties are planted at the same time. The short season varieties are more responsive to early planting than later maturing varieties, and when planted early, will yield as well as mid-season varieties planted a few days later. Planting some early varieties early will allow producers to get around some of the weather and harvest problems we had in 2006, and make the best of a wet fall.

Effect of Relative Maturity on Soybean Yield
Relative Maturity Yield (bu/A)
2.3 49.8
2.8 51.0
3.3 52.0
3.8 51.5
4.3 50.0


Winter Meeting Calendar with Pesticide Applicator and CCA Credits

A complete listing can be found at This link provides a flyer for each program with complete information including CCA and Pesticide Applicator Credits offered as well as registration cost and deadlines. Links on the calendar page also will lead you to dates for Private and Commercial Pesticide Applicator Programs being offered.

Upcoming Meetings in December include:

December 5th at 9:00 am, Ohio No-till Council Annual Meeting, Der Dutchman Restaurant in Plain City. Registration due 11/29 with a cost of $25.

December 8th at 9:30 am, NE Ohio Regional Agronomy Day, Fischer Auditorium in Wooster.

December 12th at 9:00 am, North Central Agronomy Program, American Legion Hall in Plymouth. Registration due before 12/8 with a cost of $25 or $30 at the door.

December 13th at 7:30 am, Ohio Corn/Soy Associations Annual Meeting, All Occasions Catering in Waldo. Cost is $25. Registration information coming soon.

December 19th at 8:30 am, Central Ohio Agronomy Day, OSU Newark in Newark. Cost is $20 to $50 depending on credits needed.

This website will continue to be updated with details for all programs as they become available.

Some Thoughts on Soil Compaction

Authors: Randall Reeder

For much of Ohio this was the wettest fall harvest season in at least 50 years, based on September and October rainfall. Soil compaction problems will be worse, and last longer, than most farmers have experienced.

Ruts are the first sign of compaction, and often the tires sank to tillage depth. But there can be deep soil compaction even where big tires only sank a couple of inches. Fields in continuous no-till (including strip-till) typically came through harvest in much better condition than others. But even those farmers had some problems.

There are differences among soils. Hoytville silty clay loam, based on our research, is much more likely to produce lower yields after severe compaction than others such as Kokomo or Crosby. Often there are variations in the same field. For example, on low areas and on slopes with exposed subsoil the combine left deep ruts, but on most of the field there is little obvious damage.

Subsoiling is the quickest way to deal with deep compaction. But it is not an automatic solution, and may lead to reduced yields later on. On our compaction plots at Hoytville, subsoiling gave yield increases through most of the 1990s. However, we recompacted those same plots in the fall of 2002 and 2005, and in three of the last four seasons the subsoiled plots had lower yields than the plots that have never been subsoiled. I’m not ready to reach any conclusions yet, but be aware that if a field is ripped 16 inches deep this winter, running the same heavy loads that caused the compaction in the first place may result in even worse soil structure later.

There may be some good news among the bad. I have driven by many harvested fields that appear normal, so you don’t necessarily have to worry. Also, if you decide to subsoil there is still time. Getting ruts leveled out is the first priority to eliminate most of the standing water. Then subsoiling where needed and when the conditions are right in December or January is a reasonable strategy. We have just one year of data where we delayed subsoiling until January 27, and yields were as good as plots subsoiled in November.

This is a good time to think about controlled traffic. Even if you can’t get all equipment to match on width and tire spacing, moving a step or two closer to a controlled traffic system is a good start. For more information contact


Archive Issue Contributors: 

State Specialists: Ann Dorrance, Pierce Paul and Dennis Mills (Plant Pathology), Ron Hammond (Entomology), and Peter Thomison (Corn). Extension Educators: Howard Seigrist (Licking), Roger Bender (Shelby), Harold Watters (Champaign), Keith Diedrick (Wayne), Gary Wilson (Hancock), Glen Arnold (Putnam), Wesley Haun (Logan), Mike Gastier (Huron), Alan Sundermeier (Wood), and Greg LaBarge (Fulton).

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.