Consider Emergence Testing This Year

Why Flag Test?

One of the best ways to predict which fields will yield the most is with flag emergence testing. National Corn Growers Contest winner, Randy Dowdy, created the flag test as a way to visualize what strong uniformity looks like. It is believed to be a solid method in determining which fields you will want to target with extra production dollars.

Uniformity of corn plants can have a huge effect on yields. Research shows that if plants emerge within a two week period yield reductions are less than 3%. Delayed plant emergence can caused by a variety of things. Non-uniform planting depth, crop residue, crusting, and variable moistures in the seed zone could be to blame. Not only will you be discovering what fields will have great yields, but what you may need to fine-tune for next year. If you would like to implement flag emergence testing on your own operations, follow the steps below.

  1. Mark off 1/1000th of an acre in the desired field
  2. Place a colored flag beside each emerged plant
  3. Return every 12 hours and place a different colored flag by any of the newly emerged plants
  4. Repeat this process until all the plants in the section have emerged

Before harvest, test the weight of the ears from each different colored flag section. This is another great tool for factoring in how your spring emergence plays out in yield totals. Uniform emergence has typically shown to increase yields from 5% to 9%. If you want better emergence in your own fields, consider contacting a member of our sales team to discuss row starter nutritionals. For more information on emergence testing, please contact our office at (937) 349-2080.


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