“If you desiccate too early -- particularly with something like Roundup that will kill the plant -- you’re probably going to lose up to 25 percent of your yield potential. You’re also going to cause the seed to die prematurely, which will reduce the seed weight. That, in turn, will reduce the test weight.

“So, you may quickly reduce your test weight to the point that the sorghum isn’t marketable at the elevator. You don’t want to go too early (with a harvest aid).”

When the sorghum kernel is physiologically mature, “you will be able to take your fingernail and not penetrate the seed coat.

“You’ll see a lot of variation (in maturity) out in the field. Your tillers and small heads will generally be the latest. But sorghum is quite a bit unlike corn in that instead of maturing over a two- or three-day period when everything is uniform it will mature over at least a 10-day period, maybe even more.

“That’s why it’s critical to do good field evaluations to ensure the harvest aid timing is appropriate.”