May 22, 2024

Channel Field Check Up Series: The importance of scouting your fields

With most seed in the ground by now, it’s time to get in the fields for early season scouting to monitor the emergence and eventual growth of the crop.

A successful stand establishment of a corn crop depends on several factors, starting with the emergence of the seedlings.

It’s also important to keep an eye out for common symptoms associated with seedling diseases. Here are some helpful tips and situations to look out for while doing early season scouting.

Make sure that before heading out into the field, you take a tape measure for checking stand counts. Another tool that might be good to have in your back pocket is a seed digger in order to inspect for seedling diseases.

While scouting, it’s important to know what a healthy plant looks like in order to identify seedling diseases. Healthy color and growth patterns indicate a healthy crop.

While scouting for seedling diseases, be on the lookout for yellowing, wilted, stunted, dead or missing plants. Look for discolored or rotten mesocotyls, seminal roots and nodal roots in corn crops.

In soybeans, look for seedlings that can be pulled out easily from the soil, are discolored or have rotting root tissue, or have lesions that form on the taproot or hypocotyl. These issues are all common symptoms of seedling diseases.

Diagnosing a specific seedling disease can be difficult because symptoms are very similar. The best way to positively identify the cause of the problem is to send samples of the diseased plants to a plant diagnostic clinic that offers microscopic examination and other laboratory analyses of diseased seedlings.

As the growing season gets underway in Indiana, farmers can consider these tips to enhance yield potential.

After emergence, scouting fields for stand establishment, disease issues, nutrient deficiencies, insect pressure and weed pressure is crucial.

By scouting early, a farmer still might have the opportunity to correct any issues that might be surfacing in their fields. This could be the difference between a successful crop and a crop failure.

There are online tools available at to help farmers evaluate the benefits of inputs, including a profitability calculator and a Population Optimizer tool.

Using the recommendations from these tools and working with your Channel Seedsman can help maximize the potential of your Channel products.

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