While planting progress remains slow at the statewide level, things are progressing a bit better in southwest Michigan. There were some ideal planting days between rains recently and Pioneer agronomist Mike Swoish says he and farmers in the area got quite a bit done.

“Got a few plots planted and quite a few acres down here in southwest Michigan where soil temps were warm, it was sunny and breezy. And those fields look great. A lot of them are already emerged, soybeans especially, but there’s some corn out of the ground as well. So, the crops that have been planted have done fairly well. The issue now is just finding dry enough patches here and there, both soil and breaks in the weather, to get more done.”

Now, if we have these rain days and you can’t plant, Swoish says you might as well get out and take a look at these crops already in the field if you have some.

“Making stand counts, making sure everything is looking okay. Insects are already becoming an issue for us in spots. Everything from alfalfa weevil to Asiatic garden beetle in sandy soils. That’s a problem down here in the southern part of Michigan and Northern Indiana and Ohio. They’re really nasty and really hard to deal with, so keeping an eye on those that are kind of just a white grub in the soil.”

Swoish provides his advice for checking stands.

“The easiest way is in a 30-inch row, you measure out 17 feet five inches and count your plants there and multiply that number by 1,000. That’s roughly your stand count in that area. So, do that in multiple places for corn and beans. If you’re in a narrow row spacing for beans, you can just do that across multiple rows and count that way, but hopefully we aren’t making too many replant calls just yet.”

Swoish provides more details on pest control in our full interview below. Get in touch with your Pioneer representative at pioneer.com/findmyrep.