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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: HYBRID, ROW PATTERN, AND PLANT POPULATION COMPARISONS FOR CONSERVATION TILLAGE CORN PRODUCTION

Authors
item Satterwhite, Jason - AUBURN UNIVERSITY
item Balkcom, Kipling
item Price, Andrew
item Arriaga, Francisco
item Van Santen, Edzard - AUBURN UNIVERSITY

Submitted to: Annual Southern Conservation Tillage Conference for Sustainable Agriculture
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: April 1, 2006
Publication Date: June 26, 2006
Citation: Satterwhite, J.L., Balkcom, K.S., Price, A.J., Arriaga, F.J., Van Santen, E. 2006. Hybrid, row pattern, and plant population comparisons for conservation tillage corn production. In: Schwartz, R.C., Baumhardt, R.L., Bell, J.M., editors. Proceedings of the 28th Annual Southern Conservation Systems Conference for Sustainable Agriculture, June 26-28, 2006, Amarillo, Texas. p. 104-112.

Interpretive Summary: Corn produced in narrow rows can increase yields and result in a quicker canopy closure. Costly equipment modifications make narrow rows impractical, but a twin row configuration may boost production with fewer equipment modifications. Researchers from the National Soil Dynamics Laboratory and cooperators from the Agronomy and Soils Department at Auburn University compared yield, leaf area index, and weed biomass, for a conventional and a glyphosate-tolerant hybrid across three plant populations (low 16,000-18,000; medium 24,000-26,000; high 32,000-34,000 plants ac-1) in two row patterns (single vs. twin) at four locations during the 2005 growing season. The conventional hybrid yielded 15% (138 vs. 117 bu ac-1), 12% (158 vs. 139 bu ac-1), and 16% (138 vs. 117 bu ac-1) higher than the glyphosate-tolerant hybrid at the medium population at three of the four locations. However, corn yields did not always increase with increased populations. Row spacing had no effect on weed biomass and little effect on yields. At two locations, leaf area index values of the twin row pattern were 13% (3.1 vs. 2.7 ft2 ft-2) and 10% (3.3 vs. 3.0 ft2 ft-2) higher than the standard row pattern. Leaf area index generally increased with increased plant populations and twin row configurations. Twin row corn did result in faster canopy closure, but corn yields were not increased by row pattern.

Technical Abstract: Corn (Zea mays L.) produced in narrow rows can increase yields and result in a quicker canopy closure. Costly equipment modifications make narrow rows impractical, but a twin row configuration may boost production with fewer equipment modifications. We compared yield, leaf area index, and weed biomass, for a conventional and a glyphosate-tolerant hybrid across three plant populations (low 16,000-18,000; medium 24,000-26,000; high 32,000-34,000 plants ac-1) in two row patterns (single vs. twin) at four locations during the 2005 growing season. The experimental design was a RCB (r = 4) with a split-split plot restriction on randomization, where hybrids were assigned to main plots, row patterns to subplots and plant populations to sub-subplots. There was a noticeable and statistically significant interaction between hybrid and population at three out of four locations. The conventional hybrid yielded 15% (138 vs. 117 bu ac-1), 12% (158 vs. 139 bu ac-1), and 16% (138 vs. 117 bu ac-1) higher than the glyphosate-tolerant hybrid at the medium population. Row spacing had little effect on yields. Corn yields did not always increase with increased populations. Row spacing had no effect on weed biomass; however populations had a small effect. At two locations leaf area index values of the twin row pattern were 13% (3.1 vs. 2.7 ft2 ft-2) and 10% (3.3 vs. 3.0 ft2 ft-2) higher than the standard row pattern. Leaf area index generally increased with increased plant populations and twin row configurations. Twin row corn resulted in a faster canopy closure, but corn yields were not increased by row pattern.

Last Modified: 10/31/2014
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