Corn is planted in the spring from April 15 till May 15. Corn is a hardier plant and so other than alfalfa it is usually the first crop we plant in the spring.
Corn is a big user of nitrogen. One way of supplying that is to spread manure or some kind of compost. If that is not available, then we need to apply nitrogen. We usually split the way we apply it. We’ll inject some of it right into the soil as we plant. If you see the planter rolling in the fields- you will notice tanks mounted on the planter. That is how we carry the nitrogen or any other micro-nutrients that the plant needs to healthily grow. The rest of the nitrogen we will spray on right after we plant. As we do that sometimes we may add an insecticide which is stinky, that way the animals and birds stay away and don’t dig it up before it is sprouted and growing. We may have to come back in later after the corn is up and growing to add more nutrients, depending on what weather we have been having and the stress ect. the plant has been through and what nutrient needs it might still have to continue growing healthily. For our conventional corn we plant 110- 115 day corn. That is the average amount of growing days it takes the corn plant to reach maturity. The corn plant will continue to grow all summer into fall. Then it will start to dry down. At that point you can make silage. (That is where we cut the whole stalk off at the ground and chop/dice it all up into small pieces which are stored in a silo, bunker, or ag bag and then fed to animals to eat.)
Most of the time we wait a little longer for the stalk and grain to dry down and then we pick the ear off the stalk and shell the grain off the ear. The corn (grain) can then be used for a multitude of uses. Most of ours goes to feed pigs, steers, cow’s, chickens, ect. After we take the combine through and harvest the ears, we will often shred the cornstalks down to help facilitate the rotting of the stalks so that there is not so much (trash) left over the top, which makes it easier to plant the next crop.
Did you know we offer Bush Hogging? Check it out here.