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11-21-2012 08:58 AM
I just read a very interesting piece from Iowa State that explains one view of why we had better corn yield in some areas than we'd have expected if we looked back at '88 as an example.
I posted a short note on it in Crop Talk.
The explanation makes sense and is a little scarey. We may well not dodge the next bullet, so using '12 as a model for the next dry year in marketing decision may be fraught with peril.
11-21-2012 09:16 AM
2012 national corn yields (as per the latest USDA guess) were 78% of the 1960-2012 trend.
1988 national corn yields were 75% of the 1960-2012 trend.
With that comparison in mind...did we really "dodge a bullet" this year?
If August of this year would have been as hot and as dry as August of 1988 was, we may have reached the 75%-of-trend level that we saw in 1988.
11-21-2012 09:25 AM
"According to the meteorological service Metsul, some of their long term models are indicating that the waters in the Pacific may actually cool enough for the reemergence of a mild La Nina early next year. If that occurred, it could result in deteriorating crop prospects for southern Brazil because neutral conditions or a La Nina generally increases the chances of dryer than normal weather in southern Brazil."
still time to fill the profile...........but generally speaking the top foot has some moisture...........powder the next 6 feet..........it will not take a 2012 style weather pattern to have some real issues............and if we cycle right back into a 2012 cycle............88 will look subdued...........
180 here we come............
11-21-2012 11:05 AM
Jim, irrigation in fringe areas, questionable drought in the central and north central cornbelt (i.e. Iowa, Minnesota and North Dakota) and improved corn genetics will make the 2012 drought less of an impact than 1988.
11-21-2012 12:12 PM
The two droughts really can't be compared. In my county alone nearly 130 irrigation pivots went up last winter and spring. The same fields that yielded 40 bu corn in 1988 went 240 bu this year under pivot.
11-21-2012 12:59 PM
the concept here could be an implication of '88 like planting conditions next spring if recharge is not sufficient.....and looking at NOAA's long range forecasts......not looking so stellar.
11-21-2012 11:12 PM
I agree with blacksand, He points out the expansion of irrigation since 1988. I would add that the usage and demand has expanded quite a bit since 1988, probably making 2012 a more extensive event.
The drought of 2011-12 is more extensive over a bigger area than 1988-------- at least that is how I read the comparable drought maps of a few weeks ago.
11-22-2012 07:26 AM
I think irrigation, and moisture saving practices should get the lion's share of the credit. From the dust bowl, and even the droughts of the 50s, how did you farm? You either had weeds choke out the crop, or you clean-tilled your field.
Now, there is burndown of summer fallow, instead of clean till, and no-till or minimum till planting, instead of moldboard plowing, which gave us 10-30 BPA dryland corn, instead of zero. Then, there is the irrigation, which raised the yields an easy 120-150 BPA compared to what there would have been with no irrigation.
11-22-2012 07:46 AM
Thought it was- national yield hit below the lower trendline drawn parallel to trend off '88. Had speculated last winter that an '88 type outcome would probably be around 130.
As noted at the time (true also of the positive '88 yield surprises) when corn goes into dry soil with little compaction and it is dry early so that roots head deep- it will amaze you how much stress it can take. Of course that assumes soils with enough depth to hold some moisture and that isn't true in all soils even in the same field. Even the best and deepest will eventually give it up.