Eastern Corn Crop Looked Good Until Ana Came Along

It’s no secret that the corn producers in the eastern US have had some difficulties fighting cold and rain just to get the crop planted.  NC State Extension corn specialist Dr. Ron Heiniger:

“Its been a real struggle. Last week was the busiest week. And then along comes Ana and dumps a bunch of rain in the east, where the west could use some rain.”

As we mentioned earlier, planting corn acres this spring has been a lot of stopping and starting depending on the weather, but Heiniger says a solid week of good, dry weather last week made a difference:

“I think most producers will finish up the corn this week. Last week we really hit it hard. They know what it means to start early and work late in the day. We went from 45% to 85% in a matter of 6-7 days.”

Of the acres that have been planted and have emerged, Heiniger says the stands for the most part are good:

“A few weeks ago the corn that emerged early was a little peaked, it showed typical yellowing from the cold and wet conditions. But it has responded well over the last few weeks. Except for spots where there is standing water frequently. Or it was muddy when they planted. Some of those spots are showing crown rot. There isn’t much to do with that except replant.”

And, as one might expect with a great deal of rain, some nutrient deficiency:

“Typically its magnesium and sulfur on the light soils. A lot will bounce back as it gets a chance to grow and they can reach down further into the soil.”

Dr. Ron Heiniger, NC State Extension corn specialist.




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.