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March 2, 2017

Crops in Southern Buenos Aires Impacted by Prior Dry Conditions

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

Most of the news out of Argentina this growing season has been about the widespread flooding that occurred in central Argentina in late December. In the provinces of Santa Fe, Entre Rios, Cordoba, and northern Buenos Aires, the flooding resulted in extensive losses for the soybean and corn crops. What was not a widely reported was the fact that at the same time there was flooding in central Argentina, southern Buenos Aires was in the midst of a drought.

According to a report from the National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA), southern Buenos Aires province received only about half its normal rainfall this growing season and the earlier planted corn in southern Buenos Aires suffered the most from the dry conditions. The corn that was planted during the second half of October encountered significant moisture stress as it entered the critical pollination period. The later planted corn that was planted during December, only encountered moisture stress during its vegetative development. The later planted corn is now entering pollination under much more favorable moisture conditions.

The soybeans in southern Buenos Aires were not impacted as much as the corn. The earlier planted soybeans encountered the dry conditions while in vegetative development. Those soybeans are now entering their reproductive phase and the soil moisture situation is now much improved. Soybeans can recuperate from problems earlier in the growing season and the yields of the earlier planted soybeans could still be satisfactory if the weather continues to cooperate.

The situation for the double crop soybeans is a little more complicated. These soybeans were germinating and emerging under dry conditions and as a result, the plant population is less than desirable. To compensate for the lower plant populations, the weather for the remainder of the growing season needs to be good in order to achieve acceptable yields.