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Sponsored: To Replant or Not to Replant?

Deciding when to replant a failed stand of corn can be a difficult decision to make. More often than not, it turns into an emotional decision rather than a logical one based off of yield potential. Over the last seven years, Beck’s has been conducting studies at its Kentucky Practical Farm Research (PFR)® site to evaluate when exactly it is no longer beneficial for a farmer to replant.

This study is based on a final stand of 20,000 seeds/A and is compared with replanting at a rate of 34,000 seeds/A. Beck’s data suggests that replanting a failed stand will provide an economic return if it is done before the middle of May. After that, your chances of seeing a return on investment drastically starts to decline.

Most replant decisions aren’t as clear-cut as this scenario, so there are a few other things to take into consideration:

  • Flex Ear Vs. Fixed Ear: Though corn will not compensate like soybeans, some of Beck’s hybrids do have the ability to flex in girth and length.

  • Future Weather: Just because you want to replant doesn’t always mean the weather will allow you to do so. Weather delays could decrease yield potential even more than the failed stand.

  • Percent of Field With Reduced Stand: If only a small portion of the field is affected, it is usually better to replant the portion that is damaged.

So, you've decided to replant, then how do you destroy your original stand?

First, use a tillage implement to destroy the plant. Second, use a herbicide. Most of the corn sold today has a transgenic trait that makes it resistant to Roundup® and or Liberty®, and using a herbicide can be a little difficult. One option is to use a clethodim-based chemical, such as Select® Max, but there is a plantback restriction associated with these chemicals. Another option would be to use Gramoxone® at a full rate. The efficacy of Gramoxone can be increased if tank-mixed with another photosystem II inhibiting herbicide, such as atrazine, simazine, or metribuzin. All of these options should provide adequate control of the failed stand so that your new crop will have a better chance of success.

Finally, how do you know what your existing stand is?

Before you make a decision on whether or not to replant, you need to know how many corn plants you have in your field. You can easily figure this out by following the steps below:

  • Determine what 1/1,000th of an acre is for you. This will depend on your row spacing (consult the table below for your distance).

  • Count the number of plants in that amount of row length.

  • Multiple that number by 1,000; that will give you your population/A.

Example: Corn planted on 30-inch rows has 29 emerged plants in a 17.4-foot section of row, which is 29×1,000 or 29,000 plants/A.

I understand it can be difficult to destroy a crop, so please consult your trusted adviser for any help regarding replant decisions.

For more Agronomic News from Austin Scott, Beck’s Field Advisor, please visit his Agronomy Page at

Liberty® is a registered trademark of Bayer. Roundup® and Select® Max are registered trademarks of Monsanto Technology, LLC. Gramoxone® is a registered trademark of a Syngenta Group Company.

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