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. 

  • Mike Smith Image

    Part Five: Pre-Harvest Issues to Watch out for in a Late Planting Year (Like This One)

    August 29, 2019

    Posted by Mike Smith in Harvest

    As we look ahead to harvest, it’s time to start mapping out your pre-harvest plan. You’re likely already looking at the forecast to predict when early frost dates might creep up, checking your harvest equipment for maintenance needs and scouting crops for any late-season issues. These steps are always important to ensuring a smooth harvest, but scouting before harvest is going to be a necessity this year. With the abnormal start to the planting season, late-season diseases and stalk issues may impact harvest. Here are a few things to look for.   

    • Stalk rots and prioritizing harvest by field and hybrid
      • Stalk rots can be a significant issue every year in the southern Corn Belt.  However, in wet years, the problem can lie hidden until late in the season. Corn that would normally burn up because of drought and heat will continue to appear green and growing, but inside the stalks, fungi could be feeding on structural tissues and lignin. Late-season wind storms can then cause corn to stalk lodge.  Examining hybrids for their stalk integrity late in the season is an important step to determining the order that harvest should commence. A good practice is to apply pressure about the ear node or leaf and see if the hybrid snaps at some lower node. If the hybrid does snap, split open other stalks to determine the level of incidence and severity to make decisions regarding harvest priority. 
    • Tip-back due to photosynthate loss in grain fill (excess water, disease, drought, etc.)
      • Why does the tip of my corn ear not fill to the end? This question is a very complex one that has multiple correct answers. Silk integrity, viable pollen availability and insects are three possibilities. However, another issue that is showing up this year is due to a lack of photosynthate (food made from the process of photosynthesis) availability to fill the last kernels on the cob. This can be caused by cloudy conditions, diseased tissue not being able to produce photosynthates, drought conditions that limit a plant’s ability to take up available nutrients. However, I believe the most common problem this year is nitrogen loss from fields with early applied nitrogen and wet conditions leading to nitrogen leaching through the season. Nitrogen is mobile in the soil and moves with soil water, so with wet conditions, much of our nitrogen was carried with soil moisture deeper into the soil profile where it cannot be readily accessed. This leads to stalk cannibalization in prolific hybrids and severe tip-back in non-prolific hybrids. Where tip-back is observed, stalk quality should be evaluated as in previous points to determine standability for harvest.
    • Green beans in soybeans due to late planting
      • The majority of the soybean genetic material that is sold in southern geographies is indeterminate in plant growth habit. This means that the plants will proceed vegetatively growing while initiating reproductive phases. This can mean that pods will develop late into the growing season and will not have the opportunity to reach physiological maturity prior to harvest. This can result in green beans at harvest. This situation is especially prone to happen in years when planting gets pushed to later dates due to adverse planting conditions. In areas where this may be the case, early desiccation of soybeans can be an option; however, the timing is always the key to not limit yield. Look to pods for proper timing — 80 to 90% of the pods should be turning color from green to yellow or brown prior to an application of a desiccant such as Gramoxone XL, Aim2EC or Sharpen. These products can also be mixed with insecticides to control boll worms (pod worms in soybeans) and help with limiting the number of green beans at harvest. Fields that received a strobilurin fungicide application should be considered a priority as they have a tendency to stay greener, longer.

    In all these situations, your local Stine agronomist and sales representative can assist you in making pre-harvest decisions.


  • Mike Smith Image

    Part Four: Proper Herbicide Tank Mixes for a Late Planting Year (Like This One)

    August 22, 2019

    Posted by Mike Smith in Crop Management

    What is the best way to make sure my chemicals are compatible and to introduce them into the spray solution? If you have ever had to clean out a sprayer that contained mixed chemicals that were not compatible and resembled the consistency of cottage cheese, one lesson you learned is that you never want to experience that again. To check chemicals prior to making this mistake, keep a small Mason jar handy to put small quantities of the chemicals together and observe how they interact with one another. If they mix together and remain in liquid form or in suspension in water, you’re all set. If they turn solid, better in the jar than in your tank!

    With new chemicals on the market and new combinations of chemicals, the jar test is a necessary procedure for applicators. Another key procedure for applicators is the proper mixing order for chemicals. What goes in first? What goes in last?  This is a proven method to mitigate antagonism and produce the best solution for efficacy and sprayability.

    Management Tip: Fill tank one-third to one-half full with water and add any needed water-conditioning agents.

    If ammonium sulfate is to be used with glyphosate or glufosinate solutions, add it right away and agitate continually throughout the mixing procedure. During agitation, monitor for foaming problems, or if chemicals are known to foam, add de-foamers at this point.

    Management Tip: Remember the WALESorder for tank mixing.

    • W= Products that start with “W” formulations, such as wettable powders (WP) or water dispersible granules (WDG).
    • A= Agitation. Make sure agitation is not excessive, as this may increase foaming.
    • L= Liquid, or flowable, herbicides.
    • E= Emulsifiable concentrates (EC).
    • S= Surfactants, such as non-ionic surfactants, crop oil concentrates or methylated seed oil.
    • Drift control agents should be added last.

    Enlist E3 Applications

    With the exciting news of Enlist E3 soybeans, growers have been asking for spray recommendations. We typically recommend growers consult the Enlist tank mix guidelines outlined on, but here are a few things to consider.

    By now, you should have applied an effective pre-emerge herbicide and have received adequate moisture to get good activation. For post-emerge applications, consider using Enlist Duo® (2,4-D Colex® + glyphosate). If you have glyphosate-resistant weeds, remember this system allows you to include glufosinate with glyphosate and Enlist One® for effective weed control strategies. The key to this system seems to be to mix and spray the solution as you would if you were applying glufosinate only. This means that the ammonium sulfate load is key as the carrier and should be used in the 1.25–2.5 lbs./acre range. Also, you should spray the solution at 12–18 gallons/acre to provide maximum coverage. Utilize tips that will provide optimum dispersion droplets while eliminating fines (consult the Enlist One or Duo labels for tip recommendations).  Under hot, humid conditions, this mix can get quite “hot,” so adding adjuvants or oil-based herbicides is not recommended unless absolutely necessary.

    Enlist Duo is an EC or SL formulation and confers tolerance to 2,4-D Colex and glyphosate. 

    • Rate range is 3.5 pt/acre (3–6” weeds) to 4.75 pt/acre (glyphosate-resistant or hard-to-control weeds)

    Enlist One is an SL formulation and confers tolerance to 2,4-D Colex.                                                        

    • Rate range is 1.5 pt/acre (3–6” weeds) to 2.0 pt/acre (glyphosate-resistant or hard-to-control weeds)

    Management Tip: When mixing with Enlist One, do not pour glufosinate or glyphosate into the tank simultaneously with Enlist One. Add products one at a time, allowing for adequate agitation between additions of products.

    Enlist can be sprayed on soybeans up to the R2 (full flower) stage. Labeled weeds controlled and suppressed include common ragweed, giant ragweed, morning glory, palmer amaranth, velvetleaf, waterhemp, marestail and lambsquarters.

    For more tips on herbicide tank mixing, consult the crop protection manufacturer’s website or technical representative. Remember to always consult herbicide use labels before application and follow all labels.

  • Todd Schomburg Image

    Find Stine at the 2019 Farm Progress Show

    August 15, 2019

    Posted by Todd Schomburg in Planting

    Join Stine at the 66th annual Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Illinois, August 27–29! Dubbed the nation’s largest outdoor farm event, the Farm Progress Show boasts more than 600 exhibitors, from farm equipment and supplies to seed products, agricultural inputs and more. You can find Stine at booth 1251, which is located in the northwest quadrant of the show grounds, just off Twelfth Progress Street. You can map our booth on the Farm Progress Show’s website.

    This year, Stine is excited to feature the latest corn and soybean technology on the market. Stop by and tour our show plot, where you will get a first-hand look at the following products:

    Stine Enlist E3 soybeans — Combines Stine’s high-yielding, elite genetics for powerful performance with tolerance to a new 2,4-D choline, glyphosate and glufosinate. This advanced herbicide-tolerant trait technology offers growers maximum flexibility and convenience, along with outstanding weed control. Stine is proud to offer growers the broadest lineup of Enlist E3 soybeans in 2020, with 75 different options for growers to choose from. We’ll have Stine 36EA02 and 38EB03 brand Enlist E3 soybeans available to view in our show plot.

    Stine Agrisure® Corn: From above- and below-ground insect protection to in-crop tolerance to glyphosate and other herbicides, the Stine Agrisure portfolio continues to be one of the top-performing corn trait packages in our lineup. Come check out Stine 9714-G (Agrisure GT), 9709-G (Agrisure GT), 9808E-20 (Agrisure Viptera® 3110) and R9734-32 (Agrisure Duracade® 5222 E-Z Refuge®) at our show plot, and make sure you ask our sales reps about our complete lineup of Agrisure trait corn in 2020. 

    In addition to viewing our show plot, make sure you ask one of our sales representatives how you can get one of our NEW Stine hats and our 2020 Stine Seed Catalog. You can also pop in to visit WYXY Classic 99.1’s very own Gale Cunningham, who will be broadcasting live from our booth the entire show, including live interviews, analysis and market reports.

    We look forward to seeing you at the 66th annual Farm Progress Show!