Another year is in the books and it has been another year of positive performance by those amazing little corn and soybean seeds that sprout plants ready to take on the elements of a long growing season. This year a long harvest season also became an issue for Indiana growers, and those throughout the Midwest.
“Throughout the Corn Belt I would say that this year was definitely variable when we talk about weather,” DEKALB Asgrow brand lead Pete Uitenbroek told HAT. “A lot of folks had a hard time getting the crop in the ground this spring and then it got hotter than normal in a lot of geographies throughout the year. Then it started raining and seemed like it wouldn’t dry out for folks to get the crop out, so I think there’s a fair amount who are just glad this year is behind them, but I will tell you that these products perform and we really feel good about the genetics that can weather that type of environment throughout the year.”
Standability was an issue this harvest, but the genetics are providing plants that are better able to stay up until the combines arrive.
“High end yield is always the goal, but harvestability and standability is a key component too. So, we hear our customers loud and clear and our local agronomy teams do a nice job of placing products to make sure they’re in the right environments. But there are certain things that you can’t plan for and that’s where you’ve got to make sure as you’re breeding you’re very proactive in selecting for those type of characteristics.”
Uitenbroek said their DEKALB corn and Asgrow soybeans yielded very well this year but staying aware of the new options for 2019 is smart.
“There are a few reasons,” he said. “There is certainly benefit in genetic diversity. As you think field to field and year to year you want to spread that risk out and make sure that you have a broad portfolio across your farms. I also think that you want to benefit from all the breeding and advancement that we do, and we really do bring new technology every year. We see breeding advancements every year that bring high yield potential, and I think it’s important as you think about your more productive soils that you tap into those acres with the best products available.”
He said the DEKALB corn portfolio has thirty new hybrids coming next year. Five of those will include Disease Shield for protection against five yield-robbing diseases. Asgrow soybeans will be available in 34 new varieties.