While nobody is a bigger fan of corn then I am, it's important to understand the high input costs of corn, corn vs beans and the RR corn/bean scenario.
Nitrogen costs have skyrocketed since it is made almost soley from natural gas.
This is a link to some general comaprisons although I'm not sure that it is current as the price's I've been quoted are even higher.
2007/2007 input costs for corn
Why are nitrogen prices so high?
Quite often one can get free seed corn from Pheasants Forever so the main costs are for nitrogen and herbicide.
At 45 cents per pound for urea 150# of actual nitrogen would run a about $70 per acre.
If residual herbicide is used and assuming spraying is hired done it normally has cost me around $30 to 35 per acre.
Without adding input costs for P & K...corn alone is a bare minimum of a $100 an acre,
Add the additional fertilizer, perhaps seed and fuel...one can easily spend $150 an acre without much effort.
This link is for 2006 costs but gives a good comparison of per acre costs of both corn and soybeans. You can subtract those that would not apply to a "hobby" crop.
Costs of crop production in Iowa
Fertilizer Recommendations For Soybeans
One can easily see that corn on corn is more then double the cost of soybeans.
You can lower your costs if you can apply anhydrous ammonia rather then urea and apply less nitrogen if you plant corn following alfalfa, clover or a good crop of peas.
These are things to consider as far as plot rotations for the future.
It's realtively easy to control weeds in RR soybeans as they will canopy eventually.
RR corn still needs some type of residual weed control in most cases and if planted alone, atrazine is the most commonly used.
Getting someone to purchase it or apply it is another story, which is why I'm going with the RUP/Dual Magnum 2 combo.
I can purchase these and apply them myself...I am still stuck however buying expensive nitrogen.
A bag of seed corn is 80,000 kernels planted at a rate of 26,000 to 32,000 seeds per acre...or approx. 2.5 acres per bag.
Soybean seed is normally in 50# bags but can vary from 2000-4000 seeds per pound.
Planting rates vary widely from 125,000 to 200,000+ seeds per acre.
Check your local dealer for last years seed at considerable discount and join PF...at $130 a bag for RR seed corn...the PF dues are the best bargain you'll ever get!
For those of you in the ag supply industry...help me out here with current fertilizer, seed and herbicide costs in your area.