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Replanting corn? Try this mobile app

Jeff Caldwell 06/11/2013 @ 2:26pm Multimedia Editor for Agriculture.com and Successful Farming magazine.

Are you replanting corn? If so, your window may be closing. Either way, it's probably not the easiest decision to make. Specialists at the University of Illinois have just the deal for you.

A new application -- available on both a desktop PC or most mobile devices -- can help you quickly diagnose your replant prospects and help you make what can typically be a tough decision more simple, says U of I Extension Educator and crop science specialist Dennis Bowman. The calculator app creates a recommendation based on five variables:

  • Optimal yield for the field
  • Original planting date
  • Current plant population
  • Replant planting date
  • Corn price

"Deciding on whether or not to replant can be a difficult decision. Cutworm, compaction, and seedling blight are some of the problems that can lead to reduced plant populations. The sight of an uneven reduced stand is often more than many farmers can take, but the desire to 'fix it' may not make sense agronomically or economically," Bowman says. "For fields where the stand has been relatively evenly thinned out, the following advice is most relevant. Where flooding or ponding has completely wiped out a stand in large areas, the decision to replant is easier but may be difficult to execute until these areas have fully dried out."

Current plant population is the most important variable when it comes to deciding whether or not to replant, Bowman adds, making that the first thing to nail down even before you begin using the app. The ultimate outcome of using the app isn't just to see what works agronomically. It's more about what works economically.

"The calculator utilizes the formulas that were the basis of the original (Illinois) Agronomy Handbook table and compares the replant yield potential with that of the existing stand," Bowman adds. "It quickly provides you with a dollar-per-acre amount you can use to determine if there is an economic incentive to replant and if the difference will be enough to cover replanting expenses."

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