2003 Corn Performance Tests

Edited by
Anton E. Coy, J. LaDon Day, and Paul A. Rose

The Season

The 2003 corn season was favorable for grain production. Above normal rainfall throughout delayed planting somewhat but maintained a majority of the crop in good to excellent condition all season. Favorable temperatures and adequate moisture resulted in an excellent crop state-wide. Irrigation usage was down considerably leading to reduced inputs. Some wind damage before and after tassel and near harvest were reported in some areas. The rainfall amounts in some areas caused some early season drowning and mid- season leaching of nutrients. Temperature and humidity conditions in late June and through July favored rust and southern corn leaf blight development, especially in late planted corn in the southern half of the state. Stink bugs were damaging in some areas but corn earworm pressure was less than normal.

Rainfall during the season averaged 6 to 18 inches above long term averages at the six Georgia and one Florida corn variety test locations as listed below.

Growing Season Rainfall1, 2003

Month Blairsville Calhoun2 Griffin Midville Plains Tifton Quincy, FL
   ------------------------------------------------------- inches -------------------------------------------------------------
February 5.74 7.80 5.83 4.69 4.56 4.26 6.61
March 2.40 4.90 6.98 8.44 4.85 8.22 5.89
April 7.63 4.80 5.60 5.41 5.39 3.47 3.16
May 7.33 11.75 8.36 8.33 6.77 1.26 3.69
June 4.71 3.64 10.37 6.01 4.64 6.51 8.11
July 7.39 7.76 7.87 12.69 5.91 7.37 8.19
August 6.54 5.46 1.91 2.91 6.34 8.05 4.90
September 5.41 2.96 3.46 1.71 2.33 4.00 1.37
Total (8 mo) 47.15 49.06 50.36 50.19 40.79 43.13 41.92
Normal (8 mo)* 38.78 38.04 35.42 32.79 34.48 34.01 -
1. Data submitted by Dr. G. Hoogenboom, Georgia Station, Griffin, GA.
2. Floyd County location.
* Based on 42-year average.

Maturity and harvest proceeded behind average due to wet conditions but ended only slightly behind average. Of the 370,000 planted acres (up 30,000 from 2002), 310,000 were harvested at an estimated record 135 bushels per acre (134 in 2001) for a 41.9 million bushel crop or a 25 percent increase over 2002.

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