Using our standard 90,000 kernel per bushel equation to figure yields, our 2017 crop tour had an estimated 189.9 bushel yield per acre. These numbers are down approximately 9% from last year, and were in-line with expectations as population was down, although not as much as thought. Because of the crop being planted in less-than-ideal conditions and the accumulation of wet days in April and May, originally there was some concern that we might struggle to maintain a population above 30,000 ears/acre. However, the population numbers are only down slightly from last year (about 3%). Ear development was lagging a bit compared with last year, seeing an average ear length of 33.6 kernels compared with last year's 35.6; being that average rows were identical to last year, the 2 kernel fewer length rows equate to about a 6% drop in yield, and coupled with the population decrease, a smaller crop than last year.

Discussion after the tour focused on the population concerns, and there was talk the crop looked rather healthy. Stalk health shouldn't be too big of a concern, and there was little talk of tipback and abandonment of kernels. One agronomist was surprised by the amount of spider mites he saw which could detract from test weight, but there wasn't widespread discussion of that. The extended forecast looks rather favorable for finishing out this crop, and of the samples pulled, it appears we should see a normal timeframe for the start of harvest with some 60-70% of the crop denting/dented. The final size of this crop will hinge sharply on grain fill and test weight, and the weather appears to be dodging some August stressors.

While 90,000 kernel count has been the norm for the tour and gives us a good baseline, we've found in past years that we rarely use the industry average of 90,000 per bushel. Typically, we are under that a few thousand kernels and this year the bias would be closer to an 85-86,000 kernel count.


2017 Tremont Coop Crop Tour
  Population Rows Length Yield  
Adwell - South Pekin 31.0 16.6 32.5 187.4  
Spring Lake 31.2 16.8 35.0 203.5  
Tremont - North 30.3 16.4 33.9 184.7  
Tremont - South 31.3 16.1 32.8 184.2  
Averages 31.0 16.5 33.6 189.9  



kernel size




90,000 189.9
85,000 201.1
82,000 208.5