Another of our 2012 BASF Great Growers is Steve Miller of West Union, Iowa in the northeast part of the state. He farms with his dad Henry and is pictured here with his adorable son Cam – the picture of a true family farm!
I was actually supposed to interview Steve and his dad back in the freezing December of 2009 for BASF Headline Harvest reports, which was certainly not the best harvest year to do interviews! It just so happened that the frigid day we were scheduled was the same day that little Cam decided to enter the world, so dad and granddad both were a little tired and preoccupied. We did interview Henry but Steve had other matters on his mind that took priority.
This year, little Cam is big enough to start learning about farming and the season so far has been fabulous. As of last week, Steve says they were already half done with beans and the corn was coming up. “We got the corn sprayed so we’re sitting pretty good,” Steve said.
According to USDA, nearly all of the corn in Iowa is planted already and over 80% is emerged and most of it in good to excellent condition. Steve probably has the rest of his beans planted by now since 85% was planted in the state as of Sunday with over a quarter of the crop emerged.
Last year, the wind blew all their corn down, “so we definitely took a look at height on corn and root structure and doing more of the smart stacks,” he said. They are sticking to their normal 50/50 rotation and were happy to be able to get lots of preparation for planting done last fall.
Steve said they did change their herbicide program for corn this year. “We went to a pre-emerge herbicide. Last year, we went post-emerge and we got caught when it started raining and rained for about two weeks,” he explained. “So we’re doing things differently to make sure we get the chemical where it needs to be at the right time.” They scout both corn and soybeans to determine the best time to apply Headline.
BASF wants to know – what types of crop protection products are you using this year on soybeans? Answer the Production Poll here.
Listen to or download my interview with Kip here and watch for more Great Grower interviews coming up. BASF Great Grower Steve Miller