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Veteran Advisor

Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

This story has a harvest update from the eastern Corn Belt. It includes some thoughts on marketing this year's crops and basis. But, what do you think about the validity of picking corn wetter and then drying it down vs. letting it dry down itself in the field? With low prices, every bushel counts.

 

Full Story:  Pick Wet Corn Not Dry

 

What say you?

 

Thanks,

 

Mike

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21 Replies
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Veteran Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

I'd not seen this idea so it's new to me.  Something to think about.  

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

Looks like it's going to be in the field near me until the ground freezes hard. 12-14 in. of rain. Should be dry then.

 

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Honored Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

I been running that experiment on an annual basis for years.  I have never been able to actually verify the theory.  

We harvest the first few fields into a wet corn pit in a cattle feeding facility at between 23% and 32% moisture content.  Then harvest the rest as dry corn 17 to 20% moisture and usually finish the last few fields at 13-15% moisture.

There is always a location where the wet corn agreement got finished in the middle of a field.  Rows that are left are picked dry 2-3 weeks later....  I have never seen a yield reduction that is notable.  

 

There are truths to the issue ..........But rebreathing and consuming its own reproductive seeds is not one of them.

1 ...Header loss is less in wet corn...... a good operator limits that issue when it gets too dry.

2.... Wet corn with green leaves and stalks, seperates easier in the machine because there is less leaves and trash put through.

3.... Wet corn takes more power and wears the machine more than dry corn.

4.....Wet corn harvested early definitely has less weather loss.  The longer you go into the fall the heavier the wind and moisture stress on the plants so the more field loss occurs in areas that enjoy lots of wind with the season change.

         A. The new "technology" corn plants probably won't stand all winter anyway.... In our dry windy climate out sw, the newer hybrids die suddenly after black layer and you have a hard time getting there before stalk rot and a 40 mph wind takes it down. The green left the stalk and leaves 10 days after maturity.  ----- I don't think most hybrid plants these days  live long enough to "breath" before rigor mortis.  Also it is so succeptible to disease and fungus that I am starting to consider a good coat of sherwin williams at black layer  instead of all that fungicide that seems to show no testable results.  (Agronomist opinion is usually based on stay green appearance rather than actual harvest tests)

 

5.... Wet corn at early maturity is one thing......... Wet corn way past maturity is another...  I have never seen a measureable change in yield past black layer other than less from field loss.... I am sorry but the dying corn plant is not going to reopen that door and take something back..... Field loss, grain deteriation, and sprouting may all occur, but if your corn is wet with foreign moisture, the only benefit of harvesting it wet is a chance to give your combine a mud bath. IMO.  It is too late now for the green chop option---- the original and best "wet corn" idea.

 

6....  Corn seed development is interesting but these days it is handled like a usda program.  "One size fits all" seed.  Out here in the wind drying areas of the sw .... we need a good long maturity corn that does not dry down too fast in the wind,  stays green and strong in the stalk , and can be depended on to be in the lineup for years to come.  It fits here and makes up our later harvesting fields so it is still 16.5 in late october instead of this junk we are picking now that can't take stress or a windy day and goes from 25% moisture to 12% in a week.  Needs a prayer to hold together another week after the wind.

 

7.-- Did I just read someone advising us to spend another $50 an acre for fossil fuels to dry corn in a wet climate.... ....... on a crop that has less than a dime of margin in it......... 

Just wait for the big drying freeze that will solid up those fields.  

I once spent most of december combining grain sorghum after it finally froze hard enough to get through muddy fields.  The crop tested 18-20% and no elevator would take it.  But at 20 degrees F., from 3a.m. to 11 a. m. the heads were frosty and the frost flew out of the back of the combine like dust.  The crop tested 13% moisture every day until 11 am when it warmed up a little and went to 18%...... 

Not sure that works for corn. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veteran Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

We used to always harvest corn wet - with a picker.

Put it in the crib to grind for the milk cows. (and feed the hogs)

Whatever was left got shelled to make room for the new crop.

Test weight was pretty good from drying on the cob.

Much more labor intensive - but families were bigger then.

Eventually the picker got parked in the woods next to the square baler with those super cool twine tiers.

 

 

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

ok....let me get this straight.......your going to harvest your crop wet.....yes the truck will weigh more, yes test weight

will be higher.......but I don't think you mentioned what the dockage was ???

 

yes, you might have more bushels, but end up with less dollars.

 

I think the dollars are the most important.

 

this idea has been around for years..........did you know some elevators "wet" down grain, that is dry. they say to decrease dust, but

for semis leaving the elevator ???

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Esteemed Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

zzzzzzzzzzzz

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Honored Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

I have a slightly used bridge in Brooklyn NY for sale...

 

 

Do you own stock in Ferrelgas?

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

The entire purpose of life for an annual plant is to make as much of the best possible seed that it can.  Seems odd to me that a mature, dying plant would now steal from its own progeny to survive another week or two. And if the seed companies bred that in, *****??  

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Want More Crops To Sell? Pick Wet Corn

Hobby, would you consider trading your bridge for my banana plantation in western North Dakota ?

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