2022 Pro Farmer Crop Tour - Day 2

2022 Pro Farmer Crop Tour Day 2

Get observations and insights from Pioneer agronomists on the tour. Follow #PFTour22 on Pioneer social channels.

Eastern Route - Pro Farmer Crop Tour

Day 2 - Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Map - Eastern Route - Day 2 - Midwest Crop Tour

Tour Leader - Pat Reeg, Pioneer Field Agronomist
East-Central Illinois

Photo - Pat Reeg - Pioneer Field Agronomist
  • Very little planting occurred in April due to cold and damp conditions.
  • The majority of corn and soybeans were planted in mid- to late May this year.
  • Much of east-central IL is under a moderate to severe drought although some areas have received relief with several rain events in early August.
  • Find more updates & photos.

Crop Conditions - East-Central Illinois

- Pat Reeg

As I walk the fields I am amazed at how well our Pioneer genetics are handling this precipitation shortage in 2022. Other positives observed in the field include prairie potholes did not drown out, nitrogen loss from denitrification and leaching is very limited and disease pressure remains very low this year. This leads me to believe we still have good yield potential in corn dependent on the weather during grain fill. Soybeans also have good potential if we can receive some much-needed rain in August.


Planting Conditions Challenges

Soil crusting was a major problem on fields planted between April 28 – May 2.

Photo - soil crusting in field - preseason


Photo - seedling in crusted soil


Photo - seedling in crusted soil


Photo - Soil clod - result of dry soil conditions

Planting at the optimum soil depth proved challenging this year with some tough early planting conditions often resulting in late corn emergence where seeds sat in dry soils when planted too shallow.

Photo - measuring planting depth

Weather Challenges

Photo - corn leaf showing sulfur deficiency

Below normal temps in April limited sulfur mineralization early in the season. Fields that did not receive any sulfur fertilizer often showed deficiency by mid-June especially on low organic matter soils.

Hail Damage

Photo - hail damage to cornfield

It is not uncommon to have some hail damage. This field just east of Champaign, IL was hit hard in mid-June. The Cropsey, IL area had significant hail damage in late July.


Photo - off-target dicamba damage to soybeans

Off-target dicamba damaged the soybeans on the right resulting in shorter plants and puckered leaves. The symptoms were extended by the dry weather. In this field the dicamba was applied after the June 20th cutoff date, with temperatures and winds above the label requirements and likely no buffer used next to the Pioneer® brand Enlist E3® soybeans.


Western Route - Pro Farmer Crop Tour

Day 2 - Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Map - Western Route - Day 2 - Pro Farmer Crop Tour

Tour Leader - Casey Rankin, Pioneer Product Agronomist, Southeast Nebraska

Photo - Cornfield at sunset - midseason
  • Corn could be found in the V12-R5 growth stage in southeast Nebraska as of August 11.
  • Soybeans could be found between R2-R4 stage in southeast Nebraska as of August 11.
  • Unlike most years – a larger portion of soybeans were planted before corn this year.
  • Japanese Beetles were an issue in both crops.
  • Find more updates & photos.

Crop Conditions Across SE Nebraska

- Casey Rankin


  • Areas that have been fortunate enough to catch pop-up showers over the past 4-5 weeks should be counting their lucky stars.
  • Conditions are unfortunately getting worse each passing day without rain. Heavy clay soils that retained soil moisture will benefit.


  • Cool/dry soil temps slightly delayed planting later into April. Low decomposition of residue after excellent yields in 2021 caused stand establishment issues.
  • A freeze/frost event towards the end of May coupled with multiple hail events and heavy rain the beginning of June caused considerably high replant for our district.
  • For the most part, major insect problems severely affected corn in the southeast corner of Nebraska outside of Japanese beetles that were here early and abundant – but silk clipping was minor before brown silk.
  • Western bean cutworm moths were more abundant in some areas that not prone to having high infestation numbers.
  • Low disease pressure of gray leaf spot and northern corn leaf blight. Southern rust has been confirmed in multiple counties recently.
  • With the issues we faced early – we had good timely rains leading up to VT, but hot dry weather during pollination and the lack of moisture throughout the later half of July and into August is the major issue we are currently facing.


  • Unusual high winds created issues getting herbicides applied timely in April and May.
  • Weather events stated above caused higher than normal replants – especially north and east of Lincoln.
  • Japanese beetles lingered in soybeans. Fungicide and insecticides were applied timely to limit the damage.
  • Gall midge pressure is moderate compared to past years. However, Dectes Stem Borer pressure is moderately high to the far east.
  • All things considered; our soybeans visually look better than expected – but are in a desperate need of a rain!


Spring Challenges

Dry conditions caused challenges with even seeding depth.

Photo - gall midge and stem borer symptoms on soybean plants

Photo - gall midge and stem borer symptoms on soybean plants

  • Heavy residue from 2021 record yields contributed to uneven/low soybean establishment
  • Always best to check planter settings multiple times to ensure proper planting depth!

Freeze Event May 22nd:

Heavy residue no-till fields were affected from Beatrice to Kennesaw in SE/E central Nebraska.

Photo - Mature corn ears - 9 ears

Photo - Mature corn ears - 9 ears

Areas not affected by the freeze still saw evidence of low temps with frost bands on corn


Hail Events - SE Nebraska

Two separate hail events in the southeast corner of the state devastated thousands of acres.

Photo - gall midge and stem borer symptoms on soybean plants

Photo - gall midge and stem borer symptoms on soybean plants

Good rainfall followed by hot temps created crusting issues on the replanted fields.


Insect Pressure

Photo - gall midge and stem borer symptoms on soybean plants

Dectes Stem Borer in soybeans are very prevalent. (Photo courtesy of Pioneer Sales Associate Clay Henne, 6/28/22.)


Photo - gall midge and stem borer symptoms on soybean plants

Three Week Cumulative total Western Bean Cutworm Moth Counts (July 1 - July 22, 2022) - Western Bean Cutworm Moth trap hot spots through the first weeks of July.


Optimum® AQUAmax® product P1548 looking great in Steele City, NE.

Yield Pyramid: Primary Yield Determining Factors

Hear from Pioneer Agronomy Manager Mary Gumz on how variables influence yield.
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Photo - man reviewing tablet in cornfield - mid season

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The transgenic soybean event in Enlist E3® soybeans is jointly developed and owned by Corteva Agriscience and M.S. Technologies L.L.C.

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Pioneer® brand Optimum® AQUAmax® products were grown in 13, 623 on-farm comparisons across the United States against competitor brand products (+/- 4 CRM) in 2018. Water-limited yield data includes 240 competitive comparisons with a win ratio of 63 percent, and favorable environment includes 13,383 competitive comparisons with a win ratio of 61 percent. Water-limited environments are those in which the water supply/demand ratio during flowering or grain fill was less than 0.66 on a 0-1 scale (1=adequate moisture) using the Pioneer proprietary EnClass® system and in which the yield average of competitor brand hybrids at the location was less than 150 bu/acre. Favorable growing conditions are locations where yield levels were at or above 150 bu/acre on average, regardless of water supply/demand ratio. Precipitation levels are interpolated values based on local weather stations. Product performance in water-limited environments is variable and depends on many factors such as the severity and timing of moisture deficiency, heat stress, soil type, management practices and environmental stress as well as disease and pest pressures. All hybrids may exhibit reduced yield under water and heat stress. Individual results may vary.