2021 was an enormous yr for corn yield in Ontario. Although not official, the common yield is predicted to verify in at simply over 200 bu/ac — a brand new file.

On this episode of RealAgriculture’s Corn School, we take a better have a look at the place this yield is coming from with Purdue University agronomy professor Dr. Tony Vyn. No doubt good rising situations had been a key contributor to the massive crop, however lately extra proof is pointing to how increased kernel weight is boosting yield.

In his presentation earlier this month on the Ontario Agricultural Conference, Vyn famous that hybrid analysis over the previous 30 years means that two-thirds of the yield enhance growers are actually experiencing may be attributed to increased kernel weights, when hybrids are in contrast at optimum plant density. He added that one-third of yield will increase outcome from increased kernel numbers.

In the video, Vyn seems to be at what elements contribute to increased kernel weights all through the expansion and growth of a corn plant. He notes that potential kernel weight is decided in the course of the lag part of growth (R1 – R3). The plant then enters a linear part the place steep grain accumulation and a protracted grain fill interval mix to supply heavier kernel weight.

When it involves administration elements that influence kernel weight, Vyn emphasizes that ample quantities of water and daylight are most vital. Then, in the course of the lag interval, it’s important that nitrogen is very obtainable to the plant in addition to steadiness of different vitamins together with sulphur, phosphorus, and micronutrients similar to zinc.

The key aspect, nevertheless, is nitrogen however he emphasizes that there actually isn’t any optimum charge. With so many elements impacting plant development it’s troublesome to peg a selected charge. But there are some clues growers can choose up to find out whether or not the plant has adequate nitrogen. (Story continues after the video.)

“It’s been our experience that we tend to get the best possible potential kernel weights when our leaf nitrogen concentrations going into (the lag) period are about 3 per cent nitrogen,” says Vyn. These ranges may be measured within the ear leaf, however growers will want to change their administration to incorporate tissue testing on the V12 stage, earlier than flowering, with a view to consider leaf tissue nitrogen sufficiency.

Vyn additionally advises growers to be taught as a lot as doable in regards to the hybrids they plant. He notes that every one hybrids will ‘flex’ and enhance or lower kernel numbers and weights relying on administration and rising situations. “It is helpful if growers know which hybrids flex the most in terms of kernel weight and learn as much as possible from seed suppliers about the opportunity for a hybrid to achieve increased kernel depth or length under optimum conditions.”

Click right here for extra Corn School episodes.

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