Calculating the Nutrient Value of Corn Stover

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Late wet conditions, high winds and disease pressures are contributing factors to a prolonged harvest season for farmers from Missouri to Ohio. Downed corn resulted across hundreds of acres. With some areas reporting that corn is too difficult to combine, many growers are baling the crop.

Calculating the nutrient value of the stover depends on many variables including the type of growing season, management practices, etc. The table below presents the average nutrient concentrations per ton of dry harvested corn residue.  

Corn Stover

The following formula calculates the value of nutrients in the residue based on dollars per ton of residue removed.

Nutrient amount (lbs/ton) x fertilizer price ($/lb) = Value of Nutrients in Stover ($/ton)

Calculate each nutrient’s value then tally them for the total nutrient value. Calculate the value of each nutrient and then total these values for total nutrient value.

Remember, what you are taking out of the field impacts next year’s crop. Factors including soil pH are also affected by stover removal. Soil test results can provide an accurate assessment of what soil nutrients are needed.


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