On the turn-rows, the biggest stats of the fall season have nothing to do with TDs, FGs, RBIs or ERA. It’s all about bu/A. As the proud son of a former corn yield contest winner, I can more than relate.
That’s why after three years of studying various crops and production practices on our agency’s farm, Archer Acre, a high-yield corn plot seemed like the natural evolution.
Enter Project 300, our yield quest to grow 300 bu/A corn right here in west Tennessee, on the campus of Agricenter International. Now keep in mind, we don’t exactly have Illinois Drummer soils down here. Nor is chicken manure readily available to us. Our average county yield stands at 158 bu/A. And given that out of 7,200 national entries in the 2019 NCGA yield contest, only 151 farmers hit over 300.
We are thrilled to report our 2020 corn yield is 267.4 bu/A. That’s 100 bushels above our state and county average, and a great year-one benchmark.
Most of all, we learned a lot. The impacts of uniform crop emergence, plant health and proper pollination have new meanings for our agency team of artists and digital gurus. Now we’re thinking, talking and acting like farmers.
Project 300 received lots of help from our friends: incredible support from the research team at Agricenter International, led by Dr. Bruce Kirksey; excellent crop nutrition program from Yara North America; unique crop health aids from Biovante and WISErg; and top genetics from AgriGold.
Our optimism and the information gained from this year suggests we can realize our goal of 300 in the near future. We conducted other agronomic research on our farm this year as well, including seed population and irrigation studies.
Next year we’ll be expanding our high yield research plot into 25 acres, and include other crops, more partners and field day events. So if you’d like to feature your products on Archer Acres, let us know. Just like the farmers we market to, we’re always looking to boost our bu/A.
Fred Nichols is senior vice president and leads the agriculture practice at Archer Malmo. @ArcherAcre