The debate is on: Will late nitrogen help?

The debate is on: Will late nitrogen help?

Corn Illustrated: Late nitrogen on corn seems to be a 50-50 proposition, based on conditions.

What do you do with corn that you don't believe has enough nitrogen on it yet? Either you didn't get to make an application or you believe nitrogen losses have been high. The answer seems to vary with who you talk to.

Corn Illustrated 6/8: Seeing nitrogen deficiency is easier than doing something about it

And it varies with condition of crop. People with some of the worst, most yellow corn suffering from too much water say they've added N and it hasn't greened up. Agronomists say that's because the roots are waterlogged and can't use the nitrogen.

Will more nitrogen help? Is this corn past helping even if it dries up, or can it still make a corp. How much N is still there? They're good questions, but there are few answers.

What will happen if and when it finally dries up? Will corn that is yellow finally find the N and make a partial recovery? No one seems to know for sure.

One farmer tells us he just made the call moments ago to put on more N, then another says he's not investing any more in it. That story is being repeated all over the Corn Belt, especially where too much rain has affected fields.

Agronomists say at some point it's time to stop. Many say that's about the 14th leaf stage, or when 14 leaves with collars are exposed. Generally that's about tasseling, or just before tasseling time.

The problem for some people is that they intended to put on late N, but the corn is much bigger than they intended it to be when they applied. If they don't have enough N on and the corn is decent, they may still be tempted to apply or have N applied with a high-clearance rig. Some of these rigs can inject liquid N, others use Y-Drops to spread a band of liquid on the surface.

Corn Illustrated 6/30: Know which insect you are dealing with before making decisions

The most common conclusion is that you won't know whether you did the right thing or not, field by field, until the season is over and it's too late to change things. It will be a lesson for the next time a year like this comes along. Some people are hoping another year like this never comes along!

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