Despite Damage from Rains Test Plots Still have Value


The story of crop damage due to excessive rains in the Carolinas continues to unfold, especially in South Carolina.   Kevin Phillips, field agronomist with DuPont Pioneer in South Carolina and northern Georgia:

“The rain had a pretty devastating effect on our growers and our customers in the area.  From a Pioneer perspective, most of the corn was out, there might have been a little bit of corn could have been affected by the rain, but for the most part we were done with corn.  There were some isolated growers that still had corn in the field that maybe suffered a little more lodging or a little more damaged grain.”

Phillips says that soybeans seem to have taken the biggest hit from the excessive moisture:

“The main crop affected, from a Pioneer standpoint would be soybeans.  Quite a few soybeans left in the field, and growers are still trying to evaluate the quality, and maybe try to salvage some of the harvest, just based on w hat’s left as they get intermitted days to get in the fields.  Certainly affecting our customers from a wider perspectives as they still have cotton, and in some cases peanuts left in the field.”

And the dockage fees for quality are just adding insult to injury says Phillips:

The quality discounts for all those crops whether it be Seg 2 peanuts, or soybeans are really just going to take a hit on the bottom line as far as the value of those crops.”

Phillips says harvesting his own test plots have also been challenging:

“We have been able to get a plot or two out.  The ones that we got out the test weight was pretty much reduced across the board for our whole line up, as well as for our competitive products that we put out.  So, it was pretty much an across-the-board event.”

While not likely to be the standard test plot evaluation, Phillips says there’s still valuable information to be had from the plots:

“But we are trying to evaluate those plots to see if they’re going to give us any quality data that we can use to make decisions as to product placement and product advancement going forward.”

Field Agronomist for DuPont Pioneer, Kevin Phillips.'

A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.