Crop tour finds highest average corn yield in 10 years

Ears pulled from three fields in Enfield Township show, left, significant yield loss due to poor germination; center, poor pollination; and right, good grain fill from a field estimated to yield 187 bushels per acre. (Photo by Doug Anderson)

Above-average rainfall throughout the summer has given farm fields a welcome boost in yield potential, noted farmers who participated in the 2020 White County Crop Tour last week. However, late-season disease pressure could put a damper on the top end yields if not properly managed. Southern rust pressure was noted in several townships.

The average estimated corn yield for White County is 171.1 bushels per acre compared to 158.3 bushels last year. This year’s estimate marks the highest yield average in the last 10 years of the crop tour. The highest USDA estimate during the last 10 years was in 2014 when the corn yield hit 195.3 bushels per acre.

Heralds Prairie Township in the south-central area of the county saw the highest yield estimate at 197.5 bushels per acre. The lowest yielding township was Phillips Township at 151.5 bushels per acre.

Average ear length for was 7.4 inches compared to 7.0 inches in 2019; average kernel rows were 16.1, up from 16.0 in 2019; average ear population was 28,067 per acre, up from 27,227 per acre in 2019; and the average ear-to-stalk ratio was 98%, up from 96% in 2019.

Thirty-eight individuals participated in the tour, spanning out in teams across the county to take yield measurements. Teams measured the number of stalks and ears in 60 feet. Data was taken from eight to 10 fields in each township, randomly chosen about 3 miles apart.

Read the complete report here.

Tour sponsors included White County Farm Bureau, Consolidated Grain & Barge, and Wabash Valley Service Company.

Doug Anderson serves as White County Farm Bureau manager.