Crops Technology Editor for Successful Farming magazine/


Soybean yields rise over 20 years with less land, energy, and water

yields are saddled with the reputation that their yields lag those of corn.
Still, a glance backward shows U.S. soybean yields have risen 29% on average
over the past 20 years.

reason? At October’s Syngenta Media Summit in San Antonio, Vern Hawkins,
president of Syngenta Crop Protection, noted the increase is due to:

Better technology

Glyphosate-tolerant traits


Commodity price spike has Syngenta Crop Protection hopeful for 2011

fall’s commodity price spike bodes well for crop input companies in 2011.

Hawkins, Syngenta Crop Protection president, notes the firm’s recent third
quarter sale volume for this year are up 18%. “There was strong growth across
all product lines,” Hawkins told agricultural media at October’s Syngenta Media
Summit in San Antonio, Texas.

6 insights from a crop science executive

learned can apply on the farm


In the United States, Friedrich Berschauer could pass for
any veteran businessman. In Germany, though, his position as chairman of the
board of management of Bayer CropScience gave him high visibility in European


The new glyphosate

broad-spectrum, low-cost residual herbicide might be reality someday


Picture this: A herbicide with a weed spectrum that rivals
glyphosate. Plus, it has residual, something which glyphosate doesn’t have. It
also breaks down quickly in the soil, has a low active ingredient use rate, and
costs no more than glyphosate.

Is that possible?


Managing nitrogen key for these farmers

Remember the three Rs of your school days? Reading, w(R)riting, and a(R)ithmetic?

Well, Ron Alverson and son Keith, Chester, South Dakota, have their own R series -- the four Rs of nitrogen (N) management for corn.

  1. Right form.
  2. Right place.
  3. Right time.
  4. Right rate.

It’s not that easy, though. Pegging the optimal N rate for corn often mimics hand-catching a slippery salmon in a fast-flowing stream.

Waterworld South Dakota Style

Farmers often couch when they say, “I wish it would stop raining” because Mother Nature is pretty adept at turning off the faucet during the growing season.

Nitrogen, disease, key factors for 2010 corn

Now that harvest has wrapped up in many areas, there's time to discern what worked in 2010. Here are some agronomic developments that Pioneer Hi-Bred officials discussed during a Carrollton, Missouri, field day.


Late N applications can pay

In many cases, farmers can garner full yields even with late nitrogen (N) applications. Peter Scharf, University of Missouri Extension soil fertility specialist, created this graph that shows the effect of delayed N timing on corn yields.

The data from five states shows that in most cases, full corn yields can occur even if farmers apply N late. This includes no more than 60 pounds per acre of N was applied at planting. Scharf points out the effects of the delay should even be smaller for producers who applied a full N rate and then lost N as the growing season occurred.