For the most part, corn planting is finished in West-Central Illinois, Eastern Iowa and Northeastern Missouri. Now it’s time to think about protecting that investment with fungicide applications. As I’m writing this, corn for October delivery is $3.52 to the river. That certainly makes finances tight, and we must evaluate the economics of everything we do more closely. It’s critical to do everything possible to increase per acre profit. Fungicide is one product that you can use to increase that per acre profit with very little effort.
SOIL Service has been doing fungicide work for our customers since 2006. This will be our eleventh year working to provide you with the best service and timeliest applications. In those 11 years, we have amassed a lot of data on yield responses from fungicide applications. Our annual average response has been between 12-18 bushels per acre for our customers. This year, our recommended fungicide programs will cost between $25-30 per acre. At today’s grain price, that requires a minimum yield response of 7.1 bushels per acre to break even. Anything over that is profit. A 15 bushel response would give you about a $25 per acre increase in profit. Factoring in the increased plant standability and ease of combining, it is easy to expect fungicide applications to be a good and profitable idea again in 2016.
In 2015, our growers saw a bigger yield response from fungicide than usual. Many tell us it was well over 20 bushels per acre. In general, we believe that SOIL Service aerial customers get a more consistent response than the average aerial customer, due mainly to three things:
- SOIL Service, Inc. offers the Landoil® and SOIL Boost Plus® surfactant package that research has proven makes your applications more effective, consistent and profitable.
- Three-gallon application rate. Fact- Better coverage will give you better control of the foliar diseases. At SOIL Service, we use a standard application rate of 3 GPA. This is 50% more than our competition. In some cases, we even use 4 GPA.
- Foliar Feeding. Foliar Opp®, Max72SRN® and 2075SRN® are all available along with your fungicides. This is a trend that is growing nationally, and regardless of soil test readings or soil quality, it seems to be a very profitable and popular segment of production agriculture. Whether it’s the micronutrients, available nitrogen or P & K products that you need, our sales team can help you decide which product or combination will help give you the most bang for your buck.
Please keep in mind that we can include insecticides with any of the aerial applications. We can make recommendations about corn rootworm beetles, soybean aphids, bean leaf beetles, corn aphids and many other pests that will help minimize the effect they have on your crop.
Soybeans also benefit greatly from fungicide applications at the R3 stage. Using an airplane for applications allows timely application regardless of soil moisture conditions, and it prevents sprayer tracks in the field at a time when the beans will not recover from being run over.
Please give us a call to get set up to spray your acres and get you that additional $25 per acre profit this year.