Fertility Really Counts

While the winners in the annual National Corn Yield Contest sponsored by the National Corn Growers Association do everything they can to harvest top yields, they certainly don’t skimp on nutrients.

Again And Again

Last year’s top no-till yield of 339.4 bushels per acre was turned in by David Hula of Charles City, Va. Previously in no-tilled, double-crop soybeans, the field has been no-tilled continuously since 1992. He broadcast 250 pounds of potash before no-tilling and his starter fertilizer included 65 pounds of nitrogen, 33 pounds of phosphorus, 6 pounds of sulfur, 1/2 pound of zinc and 1/10 pound of boron per acre. When the corn was 10 inches tall, he sidedressed an additional 160 pounds of nitrogen and 32 pounds of sulfur per acre.

As growing conditions improved, Hula realized the crop needed more fertilizer. So he applied 60 pounds of nitrogen and 12 pounds of sulfur per acre when the corn was 4 feet tall. This was followed with a foliar application of Feast (9-18-9) just prior to tasseling.

Broadcast, Then Band

Tim Bishop of Queenstown, Md., harvested 286 bushels of no-tilled corn per acre. He broadcast 100 pounds of potash before no-tilling, then applied 5 gallons per acre of Conklin 9-18-9 in the furrow and 20 gallons per acre of 32 percent nitrogen along with Conklin Guardian DL in a 2-by-2-inch band. Another 60 pounds of 30 percent nitrogen was tankmixed with with Gramoxone and Lumax herbicides. The field was sidedressed twice with 60 pounds of nitrogen…

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Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has served as editor of No-Till Farmer since the publication was launched in November of 1972. Raised on a six-generation Michigan Centennial Farm, he has spent his entire career in agricultural journalism. Lessiter is a dairy science graduate from Michigan State University.

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