Become a student of your crop this season

Scouting tips that get straight A’s in the Corn Belt


Ensuring your crops are stress- and disease-free can help minimize risk and optimize yields, and it begins as soon as your crops are planted. Scouting fields during early emergence is a must to diagnose and treat potential diseases before they infest your crop. Problematic diseases can change from season to season, with disease pressures varying depending on the region and weather patterns.


For much of the Corn Belt, cool, wet weather has the potential to bring about fungal pathogens as well as insect issues. While there is no easy way of knowing what the coming months will bring, there are practices you can implement to help better understand your crop.


Spend time with your crop
“Scouting isn’t done behind a windshield. The best way to scout for potential diseases is by walking your fields and spending time with your crop,” says BASF Technical Market Manager Jeremy Hogan. It’s important to note that the root of the problem usually lies underground. If your stand count or population isn’t what you expected it to be, take time to dig up areas of your field that are missing plants to find out where the problem originated. Was it tied back to an insect pest or disease that may have rotted that seed?


Track weather patterns and monitor surrounding areas
When scouting keep in mind that disease symptomology you observe can’t be reversed but you can prevent disease from spreading to new growth. To stay ahead of potential yield robbers, it’s important to track weather patterns in your area and the area around you to see if there is weather data that suggests severe disease could develop. Check with your network to see what is happening south of you and around you. If a certain pest is nearby, it’s likely coming your way.


Understand your environment
Different environmental conditions drive different diseases. Gray leaf spot in corn, for example, thrives in warm, humid conditions. Slightly cooler weather in northern geographies has the potential to bring about northern corn leaf blight. Understanding the environmental conditions you’re in—and what potential diseases that might bring about—can help you identify disease risk and what you can do to protect your crop.


Continue your Plant Health applications
Above all else, stick to your plan. Consider BASF’s wide range of Plant Health fungicides, which includes Priaxor® fungicide and Headline AMP® fungicide as part of your management plan this season. These fungicides deliver proven Plant Health benefits by protecting your crop from the stresses of the season—whether from disease or adverse environmental conditions—allowing your crop to optimize its growth efficiency and focus on yield. BASF’s Plant Health products also offer the mitigation of environmental stresses like heat, drought and frost, and even minimize your crops’ response to physical damage like hail or machinery. With a Plant Health application, your crop can focus on optimizing growth efficiency and what matters most — yield.


As a grower, learning about your crop is continuous. Don’t wait until you see disease to consider adding a BASF Plant Health application. Consult with your local BASF rep and discuss the best ways to scout for potential risk in your fields and what proactive steps you can take to be a student of your crop this season.


To learn more about BASF’s Plant Health products, visit


Always read and follow label directions.


Headline AMP and Priaxor are registered trademarks of BASF. © 2019 BASF Corporation. All rights reserved.


About BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division
With a rapidly growing population, the world is increasingly dependent on our ability to develop and maintain sustainable agriculture and healthy environments. Working with farmers, agricultural professionals, pest management experts and others, it is our role to help make this possible. That’s why we invest in a strong R&D pipeline and broad portfolio, including seeds and traits, chemical and biological crop protection, soil management, plant health, pest control and digital farming. With expert teams in the lab, field, office and in production, we connect innovative thinking and down-to-earth action to create real world ideas that work – for farmers, society and the planet. In 2018, our division generated sales of €6.2 billion. For more information, please visit or any of our social media channels.



About BASF
BASF Corporation, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than 20,000 employees in North America and had sales of $19.7 billion in 2018. For more information about BASF’s North American operations, visit At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. The approximately 122,000 employees in the BASF Group work on contributing to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into six segments: Chemicals, Materials, Industrial Solutions, Surface Technologies, Nutrition & Care and Agricultural Solutions. BASF generated sales of around €63 billion in 2018. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchange in Frankfurt (BAS) and as American Depositary Receipts (BASFY) in the U.S. Further information at