Planting is just about wrapped up and corn is growing well. Here is a field in the V3 stage.
In the photo below, you can see three leaf collars. This time of year, its possible for corn to advance 2 stages per week. In other words, it can go from V3 to V5 in a week.
The corn in the photo above is about 6 inches tall. It won’t be long before we want to put out our first shot of post-plant nitrogen. A good way to do this is put out 50% of the remaining required N before the plants are 12 inches and the remaining 50% when the plants are 24-30 inches. N can be side-dressed, broadcast, or sprayed in liquid form. Splitting applications as described above is a good way to minimize N losses and maximize utilization by the plants.
The corn in the photo above shows corn in the V4 stage and is about 8 inches tall. This is the time when we need to be thinking about our over the top herbicides. Recent research from the University of Georgia suggests that applying over the top herbicides after V7 can cause some yield reductions. See the chart below.
Here is another reason to think about putting out herbicides now. I took the photo below earlier this week.
Pigweed seedlings like the one above can get out of hand fast, so its best to spray them early. Once pigweed gets over 4 inches, hand pulling is your only good option.
For more info on fertilizing corn, check out this page from the Clemson Corn Production Guide.
For information on herbicides labeled for corn, check out the SC Pest Management Handbook.