How do you prefer to read information that improves your profitability?

  • Mostly online: 49%
  • Mostly in print: 47%
  • On my smartphone: 3%

How do you expect your corn yields this year to compare to last year’s?

  • The Same: 19%
  • Higher: 42%
  • Worse: 37%

What do you do to limit compaction on your farm?

  • Limit traffic to restricted tracks: 22%
  • Nothing, I don’t have a problem: 20%
  • Vertical tillage/ripping: 56%

How much do you think your corn yields would improve if you adopted a controlled traffic (tramlines) system which limited all of your implement traffic to the same tracks?

  • 5%: 51%
  • 10%: 24%
  • 15%: 12%
  • 20%: 10%

What do you expect to spend in this crop year for machinery costs, depreciation, repair and fuel, for corn following beans?

  • $50-75/acre: 42%
  • $75-100/acre: 25%
  • $100-115/acre: 16%
  • Above $115/acre: 15%

What percent of corn residue do you leave on the soil surface before planting the following year’s crop?

  • 30% or less: 11%
  • 30-50%: 35%
  • Over 50% left: 52%
  • Phosphorus fixation is a problem in most soils. What do you do to overcome phosphate fixation in your soils?

    • Nothing: 30%
    • Apply more phosphorus than soil test recommends: 0%
    • Apply as starter at planting: 50%
    • Use phosphorus enhancer product: 19%

    What does sustainability mean for you on your farm?

    • Farming so as to preserve soil, clean water and air while making a profit.: 60%
    • Heck if I know.: 0%
    • Something cooked up by left-coast crazies who don’t understand my business.: 39%

    When do you buy your seed?

    • August-September: 7%
    • September-October: 34%
    • November-December: 46%
    • After December: 12%

    How many days did it take you to plant this year’s corn crop?

    • * Three days: 21%
    • * Four days: 8%
    • * Five days : 14%
    • * More than five days: 56%

    How many glyphosate-resistant weeds do you routinely encounter on your farm?

    • *None: 47%
    • *1-2: 25%
    • *3-4 : 11%
    • *More than 4: 2%
    • *Don’t know: 13%

    South America is currently our largest competitor in exporting soybeans globally. Do you think their market share in world bean markets will grow or diminish in the next five years?

    • Grow: 55%
    • Shrink: 34%
    • Not Sure: 10%

    What mix of corn/beans will you plant this spring?

    • An Even corn/bean rotation: 57%
    • More corn than usual: 28%
    • More beans than usual: 13%
    • Do you still have unharvested corn in your fields?

      • Yes: 22%
      • No Thank Goodness: 77%
      • How do you manage nitrogen fertilizer applications to overcome potential losses from volatilization and/or leaching?

        • Nothing: 12%
        • Apply more nitrogen than soil test recommend : 1%
        • Split applications: 49 %
        • Use nitrogen enhancer product: 36%
        • What is your corn seeding rate? 26,000 seeds/acre or less: 6%

          • 26,0001 to 28,000 seeds/acre: 7%
          • 28,001 to 30,000 seeds/acre: 15%
          • 30,001 to 32,000 seeds/acre: 22%
          • 32,001 to 34,000 seeds/acre: 30%
          • 34,001 to 36,000 seeds/acre: 13%
          • >36,000 seeds/acre: 4%
          • Do you use pre-emergence herbicides?

            • No: 20%
            • Yes - Pre-emergence only without post-emergence herbicide applications: 8%
            • Yes - Pre-emergence followed by post-emergence herbicide applications: 70%

            What is your largest yield limiting variable on your farm?

            • My soils: 24%
            • My agronomic practices: 3%
            • Rainfall: 61%
            • Terrain: 3%
            • Manpower: 3%
            • Other: 3%

            What is your typical soybean seeding rate?

            • 140,000 seeds/acre: 22%
            • 150,000 seeds/acre: 36%
            • 160,000 seeds/acre: 17%
            • 170,000 seeds/acre: 24%

            How would you rank your projected net farm income for this most recent crop year, compared to the past 10 years on your farm?

            • My net farm income this year will probably fall in the top 25% of the past 10 years I’ve farmed.: 50%
            • In the top 50% of the past 10 years I’ve farmed: 31%
            • In the bottom half: 9%
            • In the bottom 25%: 9%

Who has been your favorite Secretary of Agriculture?

  • Robert Bergland: 4%
  • Earl Butz: 27%
  • John Block: 7%
  • Clayton Yeutter: 4%
  • Dan Glickman: 12%
  • Ann Veneman: 0%
  • Mike Johanns: 41%
  • Other: 0%

What has been the best farm invention in your lifetime?

  • Glyphosate-resistant crops: 60%
  • Management information systems: 13%
  • Precision-ag technology: 13%
  • Larger, smarter tractors: 7%
  • Larger, smarter combines: 5%

What would provide you the biggest efficiency/profitability gains?

  • Newer or bigger equipment: 27%
  • More management know-how: 22%
  • Better info technology and the knowledge to use it: 22%
  • Additional labor: 0%
  • Machinery sharing with other partners: 27%

Do you rotate your soybean varieties based on type of resistance in order to fight SCN?

  • I don’t know which type of resistance my varieties use.: 26%
  • Yes, SCN is a real problem for me.: 40%
  • No, SCN is not much of a problem where I farm.: 33%

How likely is it that you’ll harvest 100-bu. soybeans?

  • In the next 5 years: 30%
  • In the next 10 years: 35%
  • Not likely: 33%

What is the primary reason that you have not enrolled in a voluntary carbon sequestration program that pays you for no-till practices?

  • I have enough other things to do.: 23%
  • Payments for doing so should be higher.: 41%
  • My operation is not suited to no-till.: 34%

Where do your best ideas come from to improve farm profitability?

  • Neighbors and friends: 20%
  • Farm magazines and Web sites: 24%
  • Extension: 10%
  • Other Web sites: 3%
  • Meetings/field days: 37%
  • Other: 3%

What would it take for you to use strip-till on your farm?

  • I already do: 25%
  • Money to buy related equipment: 32%
  • More evidence that it will work on my farm.: 42%

Do you expect to be profitable this year on corn and soybeans?

  • Yes: 52%
  • No: 47%

Are you planning to sign up for the new ACRE program?

  • Yes: 12%
  • No: 64%
  • Maybe: 23%

What will you pay for cash rent on good corn ground this growing season?

  • Below $160/acre: 43%
  • $160-190: 17%
  • $190-220: 18%
  • $220-260: 10%
  • $260-300: 3%
  • $300-350: 3%
  • Over $350: 2%

Where do you turn most often for new ideas on your farm?

  • My farm partners/family: 12%
  • Extension: 32%
  • Farm magazines: 28%
  • Farm magazine Web sites: 8%
  • Online farm discussion forums: 0%
  • My neighbors: 20%

What is the latest you've ever planted corn?

  • Second half of May: 16%
  • June 1-15: 37%
  • June 15-20: 14%
  • June 20-25: 6%
  • June 25-30: 25%

What is your main limiting resource?

  • Time 46%
  • Operating capital 41%
  • Know-how on using new technologies 11%

What is your machinery+labor cost/acre? (This survey is anonymous.)

  • Above $110/acre: 14%
  • $95-110/acre: 12%
  • $75-95/acre: 24%
  • $60-$75/acre: 25%
  • Below $60/acre: 23%

What is your biggest concern as you enter the 2009 planting season?

  • Nitrogen prices: 28%
  • Spring and summer weather: 42%
  • Land/rent prices: 19%
  • Credit: 8%

What is your strategy for spring 2009 fertilizer purchases?

  • Already locked in most purchases for spring : 17%
  • Waiting for fertilizer prices to come down to purchase most spring needs : 46%
  • Will purchase fertilizer in increments over the next few months until spring : 14%
  • Waiting for crop prices to come up to decide what to do : 16%
  • Other: 5%

Who do you think will be the next U.S. Secretary of Agriculture?

  • Tom Buis, National Farmers Union president: 3%
  • Rep. Stephanie Herseth (D-SD): 37%
  • Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN): 3%
  • Sen. Ken Salazar (D-CO): 3%
  • Former Rep. Charles Stenholm (D-TX): 4%
  • Former IA Gov. Tom Vilsack (D): 47%

What factor will most affect your acreage allocation this spring?

  • nitrogen prices: 14%
  • crop prices: 25%
  • seed availability: 0%
  • I will stick with my conventional corn-bean rotation: 59%

With the presidential election just days away, who do you plan to vote for?

  • John McCain: 49%
  • Barack Obama: 50%