Figure 1. The yellow corn seedlings reported in multiple fields this week may be indicative of several conditions, but at this time, the widespread nature of these reports indicates they’re mostly likely tied to cool wet soils.
Many people in the last few days reported seeing yellow corn (Figure 1). The yellowing is a likely symptom of the cool, wet weather young seedlings experienced since emergence. The symptoms do not necessarily point to a nitrogen or potassium deficiency which may also cause a yellow hue. In addition, corn seedlings subjected to water-saturated soils, soil compaction, and certain herbicide applications may also reflect yellow. However, with the widespread nature of the reports, cool, wet soils and weather are the likely culprits. The other potential causes mentioned would be more field-specific.