Do Your Homework To Win With Multi-Hybrid Planters

Matching hybrids with specific “productivity zones” in each field could bring substantial profits, but laying the groundwork with hard data is essential.

In the past year, farm-equipment manufacturers have released new technology that allows multiple hybrids to be planted in a single field.

Matching hybrids with specific “productivity zones” in each field could bring substantial profits, but laying the groundwork with hard data is essential.

If successful, a system like this would let us fine-tune our decisions about hybrid selection and field management.

As with any new technology, our biggest challenge is deciding how to implement it in a way that generates tangible results in the field and helps us increase profitability for our farm operations.

It will be crucial to determine which hybrids to plant, where to plant them, and what population to use.

This technology will most likely benefit fields where water-holding capacity and soil productivity vary the most, while fields that are very consistent may show less of an advantage to changing hybrids and populations.

Get The Data

To use multi-hybrid tools effectively, producers need to have a basis for determining how to select the appropriate hybrids overall for their farms, and which ones should be planted in different field areas.

Seed companies may have some answers based on soil type, but growers may have a hard time deciding if they’re using products from more than one company.

You may need to select a group of hybrids and plant them in a replicated plot on your farm, and sort out their relative performance on your different soil types.

One place to start would be to group your farm’s soils…

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Leverich jim

Jim Leverich

No-Till Farmer's Conservation Ag Operator Fellow for 2022, Jim Leverich is a no-till farmer near Sparta, Wis. His 1,000 acre-farm has been in his family since 1864 and no-tilled since 1984. An innovator and educator, Leverich has 35-plus years of no-till and on-farm research experience, and possesses a deep, practical understanding of what makes no-till work. For his contributions while at the University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension Service, Leverich was named the No-Till Innovator of the Year (Research & Education category) in 2006. A talented presenter and writer, Leverich was a regular guest columnist for No-Till Farmer in 2011 when it earned the Gold Medal as the nation’s top newsletter from the American Society of Business Press Editors.

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