Mark Licht

Dr. Mark Licht is an assistant professor and extension cropping systems specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. His extension, research and teaching program is focused on how to holistically manage Iowa cropping systems to achieve productivity, profitability and environmental goals. Research is centered around varied aspects of soybean, corn and cover crop management as well as agronomic implications of precision technologies.

June 6, 2018 10:01 AM

Over the last week there have been sightings of twisted whorls and buggy whipping or corn leaves. It’s also known as rapid growth syndrome, accelerated growth syndrome, roping, wrapped whorls, and onion leafing, This is not unusual for corn that is growing rapidly and usually occurs in 5th...

Crop Production
May 14, 2018 6:07 PM

Planting conditions in northern Iowa, especially north of highway 20, is experiencing delays due to abundant rainfall. Corn planting progress is currently at 40% across the northern crop reporting districts compared to 65% and 70% for the state and 5-year average (...

Crop Production
April 26, 2018 2:07 PM

Every year is different. This year’s weather from January 1 to April 25 was cold and wet; a stark contrast to last year’s weather. While we know the differences in weather conditions every year, we do not know the implications on soil water and N at planting time. Field operations have just...

Crop Production
April 17, 2018 9:37 AM

This spring has already brought on concerns about poor weather resulting in delays on corn planting. At this point in time, there is still time. It is highly important to remain patient and wait for the right corn planting conditions. Planting into marginal conditions can result in problems all...

Crop Production
January 5, 2018 9:50 AM

Most of Iowa was wet and cool during planting time (end April to mid-May), warm and dry during vegetative growth (June to July), and cool and wet during reproductive development (August to September). In some locations, the June-July drought was severe with precipitation deficits exceeding eight...

Crop Production
July 20, 2017 2:13 PM

Water and temperature affect many crop processes simultaneously ranging from crop growth, development, photosynthesis, respiration, water transpiration, grain fill, and nutrient cycling. The magnitude of high temperature or drought stress depends also on the stage of the crop. Another factor...

Crop Production
June 19, 2017 8:11 AM

Unfortunately, hail damage is not a rare occurrence in Iowa. Every year hail damage occurs; it is just a matter of how severe it is and how widespread it is. In most cases, hail damage results in varied levels of defoliation. Defoliation will have an impact on crop yield potential at a greater...

Crop Production
May 25, 2017 1:05 PM

It is that time of year and with the weather conditions we’ve had the last 30 day we should expect to see purple corn, yellow corn, and maybe even some tattered leaves. Mostly the mosaic of corn color is a product of the weather; cooler and wetter. Over the last 30 days, rainfall has been 150 to...

Crop Production
May 3, 2017 9:11 AM

The cold, rainy weather this past weekend has presented challenging conditions for corn fields that have already been planted. Now that the weather is improving it’s good to start thinking about what the consequences might be and what to look for. Heat unit accumulation has been negligible since...

Crop Production
April 24, 2017 1:48 PM

Planter starting rolling this weekend across a good portion of Iowa. Based on the calendar, this is right on target to hit the ideal corn planting window. Now if only the weather would cooperate. In much of the state soil temperature have reached 50oF. However, the forecast may cause...

Crop Production
April 11, 2017 1:03 PM

Corn planting season is almost upon. Okay, for some there is already corn in the ground. Planting is one of the most important, if not the most important, field operation of the year. Now is a good time to think about planting considerations. Often I get asked what planting date is the best. In...

Crop Production
January 18, 2017 5:57 AM

If you grow soybean your help is needed. We are asking for yields and management information that is used for your soybean fields. The goal behind this project identify key factors that prohibit soybean farmers from obtaining yields that are potentially attainable on their respective farms. Or...

Crop Production
August 15, 2016 9:38 AM

A new FACTS (Forecast and Assessment of Cropping sysTemS) forecast occurred on August 11, 2016. The forecast can be found at: /facts/weather.

The weather this growing season continues to be...

Crop Production
May 16, 2016 8:51 AM

Temperature is the key for both corn and soybean. Temperature below 28oF for a couple of hours will be lethal to growing tissue that has emerged. Temperatures between 28oF and 32oF will result in definite frost injury to above ground tissue. And temperatures...

Crop Production
May 3, 2016 3:12 PM

Replanting is something we hope we don’t have to do a lot of, but if we do, there are some good resources to use to help make those decisions.

Stand assessment and replant decisions are often (OK, almost always) agonizing. It is hard to leave a stand that is below...

Crop Production
April 11, 2016 2:08 PM

Planting season is or soon will be underway. This presents an opportunity to talk about a few things; 1) ideal conditions for planting, 2) seeding depth, and 3) imbibitional chilling.

Planting conditions
Ideal planting conditions are when the soil temperature...

Crop Production
March 3, 2016 10:48 AM

The deadline for farmers to submit data for the "Soybean Yield Benchmarking Project" has been extended to April 1, 2016.

The “Soybean Yield Benchmarking Project” is a collaborative effort and is funded by soybean checkoff funds through the North...

Crop Production
September 8, 2015 8:54 AM

A new UNL Yield Forecast came out last Friday. The high probability of near- or above-average yields continues at all Iowa locations. The Sutherland and Kanawha locations still have considerable probability of below normal yields. The Lewis location has greater than a 99% probability of...

Crop Production
August 14, 2015 4:32 PM

The new Yield Forecast came out from the UNL project on today. There is a high probability of near- or above-average yields at all six Iowa locations with 95% probability being near- or above average at all locations except northwest and north central Iowa. The range of yield potentials forecast...

Crop Production
August 3, 2015 12:39 PM

It’s time for another Yield Forecast. A new Yield Forecast came out from the UNL project on July 29. For Iowa, this new forecast is similar to the July 15th forecast with the exception of northwest Iowa. Rains in northwest Iowa have increased yield potentials to 94% likelihood of being near or...

Crop Production
July 20, 2015 9:54 AM

Summer is upon us with warmer temperatures, corn pollination underway, and corn grain fill beginning. That also means talk about estimating corn yields come fall. I’m involved in two yield forecasting projects. One is out of ISU and is led by Dr. Sotirios Archontoulis using the APSIM crop model...

Crop Production