Maine corn crop benefiting from hot weather, Kersbergen tells Kennebec Journal

Richard Kersbergen, a sustainable dairy and forage systems expert with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, spoke with the Kennebec Journal for an article about record-breaking high temperatures in Augusta. On Sunday, just two days after the start of autumn, the temperature in Augusta reached 87, beating the record of 85 degrees that has stood since 1961. Monday’s high reached 88 degrees, breaking the record of 85 degrees, set in 2007, the KJ reported. Kersbergen said Maine’s corn silage crop has been behind this year and the hot weather is helping it mature. “Most of the corn grown in Maine is for corn silage,” Kersbergen said. The whole plant is harvested and chopped up and stored in a silo or silo pit for fermentation and then used to feed cows over the winter, according to the article. “We were a little bit behind on growing degree-days,” Kersbergen said. “This hot weather is allowing them to catch up.”