www.MichiganFarmer.com November 2009 / 23
Seed treatments key to high yields
By TOM J. BECHMAN 250 and Poncho 1250. For the ﬁrst time, Three of the 10 will go far beyond yield,
Avicta Complete Corn will be available on measuring stalk diameter and a whole
ROP yields will double by 2030 an as-ordered basis. It protects against host of parameters that should provide
only if a whole series of ad- nematodes in corn, Messman observes. a better picture of how corn reacts in
vances click into place, much twin rows.
like the pieces of a puzzle. Seed compa- ny’s state-of-the-art seed treatment that Learn about twin-row corn Not everyone is quick to jump on the
nies are banking on seed treatments to includes an insecticide, fungicide and Great Plains is serious about the poten- twin-row bandwagon, however. Kinze
be one piece of the puzzle. While only other amendments. tial for success of twin-row corn. The says its own survey indicated 85% of
about one-third of all soybean seed was Representatives say original company emphasized it during a press corn producers are still in 30-inch rows.
treated in ’09, expect that number to Roundup Ready varieties offered by conference at the Farm Progress Show They’re following twin rows on the
rise dramatically. Monsanto will not be treated, unless the earlier this fall and recently introduced radar screen, but don’t see enough in-
Pioneer recently announced its customer orders treatment. a Web site devoted exclusively to twin- terest yet to keep a twin-row planter in
Pioneer Premium Seed Treatment of- row corn. Find it at www.twin-row.com. their lineup.
fering for 2010. Pioneer is now offering Corn planting moves earlier It’s designed as an easy-to-use site,
fungicide and fungicide-insecticide Here’s one reason Pioneer is also em- which could be a one-stop source for Battery-powered welder
treatments for soybean seed from the phasizing and looking for improved those wanting to learn about twin-row Someone must provide tools to maintain
conditioning plant. Growers can get seed treatments for corn. Mick planting. You’ll ﬁnd videos, links to in- equipment that would be needed for
seed treated with Gaucho insecticide, Messman, senior marketing manager for dependent research results, reports and narrow rows. Hobart Welding Products
Trilex fungicide and/or Alegiance fun- North American seed treatment, says a articles, and much more. just unveiled the Trek 180 battery-pow-
gicide. Pioneer’s expanded emphasis recent Pioneer survey revealed the ma- ered MIG welder. It can operate off its
on seed treatments in 2010 also means jority of corn acres are planted nearly Row-spacing piece own self-contained battery or 115-volt
growers can add inoculants, signal mol- 10 days earlier than just a decade ago. Great Plains isn’t the only company power. The 52-pound portable unit can
ecules and other amendments closer to Earlier planting means more chances that thinks new row spacing may be an- weld 24-gauge up to ¹⁄₄-inch mild steel. It
planting to meet localized needs. for weather to create obstacles to plant other piece in the puzzle to increasing can be recharged from inside a vehicle
Monsanto will continue offering emergence, Messman says. yields. According to a university source, using an automotive power inverter.
Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yield vari- Pioneer’s offering of seed treatments Monsanto helped sponsor testing of These traits make it ideal for repairs in
eties only with Acceleron, the compa- on corn in 2010 include Cruiser Extreme twin rows at 10 universities this season. the ﬁeld.
Time for assessing
Normal ranges of silage fermentation analyses
Legume silage Grass silage Corn silage
Moisture: 65% + 50% - 65% < 50% < 70% 60% - 65%
quality of silage pH
Lactic acid (% of DM)
Acetic acid (% of DM)
4.0 - 4.3
1.0 - 3.0
4.3 - 4.7
0.5 - 2.5
4.7 - 5.0
0.5 - 2.0
4.3 - 4.7
6 - 10
1.0 - 3.0
3.8 - 4.2
5 - 10
1.0 - 3.0
Propionic acid (% of DM) <0.5 <0.25 <0.1 <0.1 <0.1
By DAN UNDERSANDER
A month or more after
silage or baleage is made,
Focus on Forages Butyric acid (% of DM)
Ethanol (% of DM)
Ammonia-CP (% of CP) <15 <12 <10 <12 <8
you should examine it to fermentation by doing a fermenta-
determine its quality and tion analysis, available at many forage Lactic acid (% of total acids) >60 >70 >70 >60 >70
to see what you will be testing laboratories. These analyses
feeding. Use this assess- should always be used in conjunction forage, but more rapid heating and mold ■ restricted fermentation due to
ment to identify things you could do with standard chemical analyses (i.e. growth will occur when the silage is ex- cold weather
better next time. neutral detergent ﬁber, crude protein, posed to air at feeding because less acid ■ clostridial fermentations with high
Color should be light to medium rumen-degradable protein/rumen-unde- is available to inhibit microbial growth. butyric acid production
brown for alfalfa, grass and corn silage. gradable protein, NDF digestion, etc.) to Lactic acid is the primary acid in ■ silage sample for analysis taken
Red clover silage will be darker. balance animal rations. good silage; it is stronger than the other after considerable exposure to air so
A good silage (either legume, grass or The common fermentation analyses acids, causes most of the drop in silage lactic acid has degraded
corn) should have a pleasant smell. The are pH; lactic, acetic, propionic and bu- pH, and results from fermentation with Assessing silage quality by smell, feel
smell tends to be more vinegary in wet tyric acids; ammonia; and ethanol. The the least losses of DM and energy. Lactic and fermentation analysis can tell you
silages (more than 65% moisture) and normal ranges for these analyses are acid should be at least 65% of the total how to make better silage next year and
sweeter in dry silages (less than 55% shown in the table. silage acids. Some common reasons for how to make the best of the silage you
moisture). The latter (often with darker Silage acidity is measured as pH with low lactic acid content are: have this year.
color) indicates excessive heating and lower values indicating more acid and ■ restricted fermentation due to Undersander is a University of
loss of total digestible nutrients and di- better fermentation. Corn silages usu- high DM content (especially legumes Wisconsin forage research and Extension
gestible protein. A strong vinegar smell ally have a pH less than 4.2. Legumes and grasses with more than 50% DM) agronomist.
comes from a high acetic acid content, have more buffering capacity and gener-
which indicates less desirable fermenta-
tion and, possibly, reduced intake that
ally have slightly higher silage pH. Some
common reasons for high silage pH are: BIO contributes $15,000 to FFA
■ overly mature or drought-stricken
is often associated with wet silage. A
butyric acid smell (silage made too wet) dry silage (more than 50% dry matter) to support youth science education
or the smell of ammonia can indicate re- ■ sample taken for analysis before
duced quality and animal intake.
The silo, bunker or silo tube should
silage is fully fermented
■ cold weather during harvest and
I N a show of support for expanding innovative science projects for high school
students, the Biotechnology Industry Organization has presented the National
FFA Organization with a contribution of $15,000.
be checked for leakage. In addition to slow or poor packing BIO’s contribution will go largely to support a new pilot contest within FFA
being a pollution problem, the efﬂuent ■ legume silages with high ash through which students will produce videos creatively explaining the beneﬁts and
represents a loss of nutrients because (more than 15% DM) and/or protein con- sustainability of modern agricultural methods.
the silage was made too wet. tent (more than 23% to 24% CP) The FFA “Sustainability Through Biotechnology” pilot project will offer students
When you see bright orange color ■ silage with excess ammonia the chance to win new equipment for their chapter by producing winning videos
around the silo, be careful. This is due ■ clostridial silages/spoiled or that creatively highlight the beneﬁts of modern agricultural methods such as seed
to nitrogen dioxide, which is often asso- moldy silages technologies that produce more yields per acre and farming practices that are
ciated with nitrous oxide, both of which ■ silages containing manure more environmentally friendly. The prizes will be presented by biotechnology in-
are toxic to humans and animals. High pH due to restricted fermenta- dustry leaders on-site at the winning chapters’ schools in early 2010.
You can get a better idea of silage tion (in high DM silage) may be good More information on the program can be found at www.FFA.org.