Stine’s Ask the Agronomist blog is your source to the latest information from our expert team, including advice and insight on field practices, product recommendations, planting and harvest updates, new technologies, crop management, innovative research and information about how to keep your farm operation running smoothly year round. 

  • Tony Lenz Image

    Reflect on Weed Control After Harvest

    November 07, 2016

    Posted by Tony Lenz in Harvest

    I hope everyone reading this has either finished harvesting or is close to finishing, and that you’ve had a safe and successful season.

    Now that your memory is fresh on how clean your fields were at harvest, it’s a good time to re-evaluate your weed management practices. You’ve monitored your weed control performance all summer, but when weeds such as marestail, kochia, waterhemp and giant ragweed run through your combine, the seeds spread, and you witness firsthand what you are putting back into your field for the coming years.

    Every weed left in your field is something you will deal with next year and beyond, so if you were not happy with weed control this year, it may be time to look into alternative programs for 2017.

    This fall, Stine® LibertyLink® soybeans, combined with Liberty® herbicide treatments, have produced great yields with very good weed control. Many producers had success applying a pre-plant or pre-emerge herbicide in spring and then coming back with 28–32 ounces of Liberty with 3–4 pounds of AMS. Spraying with at least 40 PSI and around 20 gallons per acre during the warmer parts of the day also ensure great weed control performance with the Liberty system. LibertyLink products, such as Stine 13LH62, 17LH62, 23LF32 and 26LH02 brand soybeans, have been outstanding performers in my region, and we’ll have more varieties to choose from in 2017.

    For growers who struggled with corn herbicide performance this year, many of our Stine corn hybrids have the option to be sprayed with either glyphosate or glufosinate (Liberty). Stine SmartStax® corn and Agrisure Viptera® dash 20 hybrids can be sprayed with either chemistry.

    However, the best way to manage weeds is through crop rotation and using different modes of action as often as possible. Make use of pre-herbicides and burndowns in the fall for perennial weeds, or tackle weeds early in the spring with burndown applications. This is especially important in no-till situations. It’s also important to manage the weeds when they are small. Use the proper herbicide rates, and make sure that if weeds are resistant, you look to alternative options such as Stine LibertyLink soybeans. There are many new options coming down the pipeline, but we know that LibertyLink soybeans have proven yields and great weed control against glyphosate-resistant weeds.

    Use this time wisely to reflect on your weed control efforts in 2016 to help manage your acres in 2017. And remember, if you have questions about weed control or our 2017 product lineup, please reach out to your local Stine sales representative.  

  • Amanda Oberg Image

    Get in the Habit of Fall Soil Sampling

    November 01, 2016

    Posted by Amanda Oberg in Crop Management

    Our corn and soybean plants depend on the soil to provide adequate nutrients to grow and provide maximum yield. As growers and agronomists, we must manage that soil balance to maximize growth and profitability. This is why one of the best crop management practices we can do is soil sampling. Soil tests are inexpensive and measure the pH and nutrient components of your soil. Having this information is beneficial for making economical and environmentally responsible nutrient and fertilizer application decisions. The first step to a successful 2017 begins with testing your soil now.

    Although many nutrients, such as phosphorous and potassium, can be tested at any time of the year, we also need to take a close look at pH and buffer pH. Fall sampling allows you to do this and to reflect on the previous season while it’s still fresh on the mind to address any shortfalls you may have had. Keep in mind that you do not want your fall test values to fall short of mid-range. If they do, this could indicate that your nutrient levels have been completely depleted.

    Most importantly, sampling in the fall will give you dryer and better weather conditions as well as ample time to process and make your nutrient application decisions. Heavy spreader trucks in the spring increase compaction and shorten your window of application opportunities. Moving forward, whether you sample in the spring or fall, the main takeaway is to sample when you have time to do a good job and to make sure you do it at the same time every year to maximize your consistency.

    The reliability of a soil test is only as good as the sample you submit. Some helpful tips include:

    • Use a grid/zig-zag pattern, draw a map and label where your samples were taken.
    • 10–15 cores per sample for every 2.5 acres.
    • As far as depth is concerned, use 6–8 inches in tilled soil and 3–4 inches in no-tilled ground.
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    Harvest Roundup

    October 17, 2016

    Posted by Stine Seed in Harvest

    Region 3 (southern South Dakota, northern Nebraska, southwestern Minnesota)

    RSA Tony Lenz

    Region 3 has had very good yields for soybeans. In Minnesota, early maturity beans, such as 1.3 to late group 1 beans, are beating the group 2 beans. We’ve also seen very high yields from our early maturity Stine® LibertyLink® soybeans. As far as Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybeans, yields on Stine 19RF32 brand have been outstanding in South Dakota and Minnesota.

    Without a killing frost in my region, the later maturities have been tough to combine, especially with wet conditions throughout the area. Some areas in southern South Dakota that were planted in early June won’t be harvested for a while.

    Corn harvest has just begun in Region 3, so yields have been slow to come in. We are seeing very good standability from our hybrids, and many fields are drying down nicely, so those fields should come out fast.   


    Region 5 (southern Nebraska, northeastern Colorado, southwestern Iowa and central Kansas)

    RSA Chad Kuehl

    Harvest is moving along in Region 5, with most finishing soybeans in the next 7–10 days. We're seeing some very good soybean yields with LibertyLink and Roundup soybeans. On the LibertyLink side, we're seeing good things from Stine 31LE32 brand and 36LE32 brand. With Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans, Stine 29RE22 brand has been very good as usual, and we're seeing very good data on Stine 27RI02 brand, which is new for 2017.

    When it comes to corn harvest, we're seeing some good yields where we had rain. In some parts of Nebraska, it was a really dry year so yields are lower than they have been in the past. We were able to harvest some of the new corn numbers, and Stine 9734E-20, 9739E-20, 9734-0 and 9638-0 stand out. We still have a lot of corn to come out, so we look forward to collecting more information to share with everyone. 


    Region 7 (eastern Iowa, northeastern Missouri)

    RSA John Furlong

    It’s still early for corn, but we’re seeing some good yields coming in from what has been harvested. More growers are harvesting soybeans right now. Stine LibertyLink soybeans are doing great! We had a plot in the 2.4–3.2 maturity range where LibertyLink out yielded Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yieldsoybeans by 8 plus bushels per acre in a side-by-side comparison. The fields were also cleaner!

    Region 8 (north central Missouri)

    RSA Mike Eckels

    Region 8 is about 70 percent done harvesting corn, with yields doing pretty well for the inclement weather we’ve had. Farmers who applied late-season nitrogen and used fungicide and insecticide applications are really seeing the benefits this year. With test plots starting to come out, we’re excited to see how the new Stine HP Corn® hybrids compare to the more seasoned hybrids.

    On the bean side, around 25 percent are harvested. The LibertyLink program is still doing a very good job keeping the fields clean. Stine 38LEO2 brand, 40LF23 brand and 42LH22 brand are some of the LibertyLink soybeans that are yielding well.


    Region 17 (central Indiana, west central Ohio)

    RSA Doug Score

    With corn harvest about 25 percent complete, yields in Region 17 seem to be falling short of our initial expectations. Most of the preharvest estimates were 10–15 percent higher than actual yields. Most growers’ yields are good, but they’re not what they originally anticipated. Four issues to blame for average yields are:

    1. Higher overnight temps, which didn’t allow the corn a break from transpiration. 
    2. Lack of moisture following pollination.
    3. Southern rust and anthracnose top dieback in the southern part of the region. Those who sprayed fungicides showed a substantial yield advantage over the untreated acres with southern rust. Fungicides applied (with control of anthracnose) at V5 were more effective than those sprayed at VT for the anthracnose top dieback.  
    4. Stalk and ear rot. Anthracnose stalk rot is the most common disease affecting corn standability as of late. Many growers see the importance of a speedy harvest this year because of the compromised stalks thought out the region. Diplodia and gibberella ear rot have also been a nuisance this harvest season. To add fuel to the fire, growers are experiencing price docks for grain damage and vomitoxin levels in some areas from ear rot.

    That being said, with bean harvest 65 percent complete, yields have been coming in well above everyone’s expectations, likely because of adequate moisture late in the season. Our LibertyLink soybean lineup has been untouchable; growers are enjoying clean fields and exceptional yields. Stine 28LF32, 31LE32, 33LI32, 36LE32 and 38LE02 brand have all been top performers.