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Forklift moving Armor Seed products in a warehouse.

So, some of our more southern friends have a jump on the rest of us when it comes to getting their corn in the ground this year. But for most, our spirits—and our ground—have been dampened by rain and cool temperatures. As you watch the days tick by, keep this in mind. Soil temperature is much more important than the calendar. Your prime opportunity to plant corn comes when the morning soil temperature hits 55 degrees at the two-inch depth by 9 a.m. for three consecutive days. And if you see a favorable 10-day forecast? All the better.

If you have several acres to get over, early planting is important. But remember, we can plant corn all the way through the end of April without any yield loss. You do not want extra expenses in these tight financial times, so do your best to do it right the first time.

Planting Depth

Corn should be planted 1 ½” to 2” deep. For you rice, soybean and cotton farmers, a reminder that corn should be planted no less than 1 ½” deep. In fact, you would rather have it three inches deep than too shallow. Corn plants need nodal roots to support the standability of the plant. Plant it too shallow and it will not develop the nodal roots it needs to support the plant and it will lodge (fall down.)

Seeding Rate

In most cases, seeding rates should be in the 32,000 to 36,000 seeds per acre range. Semi-flex varieties will be fine on the lower end of the seeding rate range where you have excellent conditions for emergence. The semi-determinate varieties need to be on the higher end of the seeding range. In fact, for those who have very productive ground, are seeding on twin rows, and want to try to push yields to the max, seeding rates can even be pushed into the 38,000 to 40,000 range (semi-determinate varieties.)

Talk to your Armor Seed representative about the right seed and the right planting process for your field. Find your local Armor contact here.