Susan Winsor


Before joining Corn and Soybean Digest, Susan was an agricultural magazine editor for Miller Publishing, a newspaper reporter for Gannett newspapers and Manager, Marketing Publications for Cenex/Land O’Lakes Ag Services. She graduated from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Journalism.

Tips for sidedressing nitrogen on corn

Spoon-feeding nitrogen makes agronomic and economic sense. These guidelines will help you get the best return on your nitrogen investment.

Delayed soybean weed control costs $3.50 per day 1

Shoulda, coulda, woulda may be the theme if you didn’t use a pre-emerge herbicide, and rain has kept you from returning to spray. That could get to be expensive. In soybeans, you have from 9 to 19 days after soybean emergence before losing yield.

Q&A: Aerial photos reveal problems in corn, soybean fields

Common man-made agronomic problems that he sees aerially often arise from uneven plant emergence/planter problems and uneven nutrient application. These July 2013 aerial photos from northeast Iowa show agronomic problems. Can you decipher them?

Farmer educates consumers about GMOs 53

When a group of anti-GMO activists confronted some corn farmers at a convention, Mike Petefish, Claremont, Minn., farmer, calmly approached them to present the scientific facts on GMOs. The 29-year-old farmer has an undergraduate degree in Plant Breeding and Plant Biology and a Master’s in Agronomy. “I just talk to people about the truth of the matter, from my perspective,” he says.

Picking rocks can take longer than planting 1

“Rock and roll” isn’t about music for Mike Petefish when he’s picking rocks in Claremont, Minnesota. “When I see a rock like this one with a certain bluish color, I know it’ll be dense and heavier for its size than any other, and all I can do is rebury it cause I sure can’t lift it with a backhoe,” he says.

Use growing degree days, not calendar days, when planting corn

“Think of corn in thermal time (growing degree days) instead of calendar time,” advises Emerson Nafziger, University of Illinois agronomist. “If the whole (corn) crop got planted May 10 instead of May 1, we would not see a big drop in yield. We won’t lose a huge amount of yield until mid-May. We may have forgotten there’s a real advantage for the corn plant to be in a fairly warm soil, ready to germinate and emerge in five to six days."

Farmers: There’s still time to plant corn

“Some cold, wet spring days like today, you wonder whether the (corn) seed is better off in the bag or in the field,” says Emerson Nafziger, University of Illinois Agronomist. Wet soils and cold weather have disrupted corn planting across large parts of the Upper Midwest and all of Iowa.

Monsanto promises more efficient water and nutrient use across 1 million acres

Monsanto says it will increase its irrigation water-use efficiency by 25% by 2020 in its global seed production operations, saving 30 billion to 80 billion gallons of water annually, says Hugh Grant, Monsanto chairman and chief executive officer.

On-farm experiments increase corn, soybean yields

Would you believe that the corn ears from plants emerging on Day 1 would be 13% fatter than the corn ears from Day-2-emerged corn? That’s exactly what played out at Watson Farms, Villa Grove, Ill., last year on a test of a 40-ft. section of one row. You could say the Watsons’ corn stood the test of time.

Conservation efforts target women landowners

Women own a great deal of U.S. farmland, and one national women’s sustainable farming group aims to help these landowners learn more. Women, Food and Agriculture, a national community of women involved in sustainable agriculture, provides the information and confidence they need to take action and work with tenants to improve soil and water conservation on their farmland.

Nitrogen tips for spring 2014 1

Cool soil in most of the Corn Belt means a low risk of nitrogen loss for now, says Emerson Nafziger, University of Illinois Crop Sciences professor. Advising farmers on best nitrogen practices for this spring, Nafziger offers these observations and pointers.

Less time for planting 1

It’s official now: some major Corn Belt states’ corn and soybean planting weather windows have officially shrunk. Purdue Professor Ben Gramig found that Illinois and Iowa have on average 11-12% fewer hours per week to plant, when comparing 1980-1994 to 1995-2010.

Corn farmer reduces water nitrate level by 29%

“The first year I enrolled in the Mississippi River Basin Initiative (MRBI) program, my farm’s tile water had higher nitrates than the stream where it drained,” says Tim Smith, Iowa farmer.

Conservation practices save money, increase sustainability 

To be sustainable, Rulon Enterprises is a low-cost producer, increases soil organic matter with never-till and other conservation measures, pattern tiles to speed drainage and is a high-price seller.

Conservation offers sustainable, competitive advantage in farming

Rulon Enterprises capitalizes on advanced, environmentally beneficial practices to build soil health and sustainable profits. His family’s emphasis on soil health and disciplined, financial management and marketing makes them extremely competitive in today’s lean environment.

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