Popularity of Drought Tolerant Seed Corn Spreading Beyond the Cornbelt
Drought used to be an issue only for the arid western regions, but more and more, drought is impacting the entire Corn Belt and beyond. In light of this fact, many agricultural experts recommend that all farmers plant at least some of their acres to drought tolerant hybrids.
One option is Artesian corn hybrids. The beauty of Artesian hybrids is that they conserve water and sustain yields when there are drought conditions, but also meet or exceed the yields of comparable hybrids when conditions are normal.
Research shows that during seasons when available water is limited, Artesian hybrids demonstrate a nearly 12 percent yield advantage over non-Artesian hybrids. What’s more, farmers across the nation are beginning to see the benefit of these hybrids’ water optimization, regardless of the weather conditions. Other benefits of Artesian hybrids are late-season stay-green that result in better grain quality, better standability and higher test weights.
Of course, drought resistant hybrids were initially designed for the western Corn Belt which is why these hybrids are more popular in this area and many farmers in the other parts of the country are unfamiliar with these types of hybrids. That is likely to change since the latest hybrids are designed for more disease resistance and improved water use, making them attractive to farmers across the United States.
Still, not all farmers are interested in giving drought tolerant seed corn a try. In. such cases, education is the key since these farmers may not be aware of all they these hybrids have to offer. They also may be under the mistaken assumption that they are only for farmers who are concerned specifically with drought. However, water issues come in different forms. For example, farmers in the central and eastern portions of the Cornbelt deal with variable amounts of rainfall which can negatively impact yields. Variable moisture levels in soil also prevent corn crops from using water as effectively as possible.
Such farmers may be surprised to learn that the drought tolerance and water optimization that comes with Artesian hybrids can go a long way toward improving their operations-no matter where they live. For example, Artesian hybrids have been shown to perform well season after season in tough conditions other than just droughts. Artesian hybrids also can help crops optimize the use of available water at all stages of plant growth. Finally, these hybrids can be combined with the best insect control and herbicide-tolerant traits available.