What Did I Learn From My Yield Data?

December 10, 2019

2019 harvest if winding down for some and completed for the fortunate. Once the equipment is put away and you’ve had a chance to catch your breath, what’s next? Everyone’s favorite—Yield Data. Yield data is a vital tool we can use to learn about our acres every year. Managing and working our way through isn’t always easy, especially when we remember all the situations our crop went through this past year. Here are some tips when interpreting your yield data and what we should and shouldn’t do based on the information.

  1. Remember what your crop went through this past season. Every growing season is different, and hybrids respond differently to different growing environments.
    1. This year the products that performed well across your acres might not have performed like they did last year.
    2. Planting delays and marginal planting conditions affected both corn and soybeans final stands. Many fields I scouted throughout the year had 10-25% less stand due to planting conditions this spring. Uneven emergence was common to see in most corn fields too.
    3. Weed control was more difficult this year due to wet conditions in late May and into June. Crop protection applications were delayed and sometimes not able to be made when they were needed.
    4. Early season nitrogen was very difficult to monitor and manage due to saturated fields. Nitrogen deficiency was very prevalent across the western corn belt. Where side-dressing was warranted, field conditions didn’t allow them to happen in a timely fashion.
    5. The crop progression throughout the year was slowed due to the lack of heat units, and sunlight causing harvest to be delayed and fuller season products to not dry down. Waiting to harvest these products added to the harvest loss potential on both corn and soybeans.
    6. Late season nitrogen deficiency was evident, especially where stalk nitrate samples were taken. Too much rain this year caused leaching and denitrification of the Nitrogen and the corn plants couldn’t produce up to their potential.
  1. What decisions can the yield data from this year help me make?
    1. Comparing varieties in the same field is a great way to compare two products.
    2. Comparing products that are in two different fields can be tricky, especially when each field potentially had different conditions throughout the year.
    3. Looking at overall performance of products over multiple fields and growing conditions will help give you a better picture of the performance of the product.
    4. Compare your results to third party trials that were in your area to look for any trends. http://therightseed.com/yield-data/3rd-party-trial-performance/156
    5. No one knows your fields better than you do and using this data over multiple years will assist you in your decision making.


  1. What are the chances that your highest yielding product will be your best product next year? Research shows less than a 25% chance.
  2. Don’t switch your maturity drastically based on one year of data. Look at trends over the past couple of years on product maturity for your fields.
  3. If you have any questions or need any help reading your data, please call your local Hoegemeyer agronomist and we will be glad to help.

Be sure to check out our plot results at: http://therightseed.com/yield-data/plot-results/114

Eric Solberg, Eastern Product Agronomist

Categories: performance     Tags: harvest, yield data    

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