2019 OHIO ORGANIC CORN PERFORMANCE TEST

R.J. Minyo, A.B. Geyer, P.R. Thomison, Horticulture & Crop Science,
G. Reid, Farm Operations and D.G. Lohnes, Information Technology
Ohio State University Extension/Ohio Agricultural Research & Development Center

The purpose of the Ohio Organic Corn Performance Test (OCPT) is to evaluate certified organic corn hybrids for grain yield and other important agronomic characteristics. Results of the test can assist farmers in selecting hybrids best suited to their farming operations and production environments. Corn hybrids differ considerably in yield potential, standability, maturity, and other agronomic characteristics that affect profitable crop production. Hybrid selection should be based on proven performance from multiple test locations and years. The presentation of data does not imply endorsement of any hybrid by The Ohio State University.

EVALUATION PROCEDURES

The purpose of the Ohio Organic Corn Performance Test (OCPT) is to evaluate certified organic corn hybrids for grain yield and other important agronomic characteristics. Results of the test can assist farmers in selecting hybrids best suited to their farming operations and production environments. Corn hybrids differ considerably in yield potential, standability, maturity, and other agronomic characteristics that affect profitable crop production. Hybrid selection should be based on proven performance from multiple test locations and years. The presentation of data does not imply endorsement of any hybrid by The Ohio State University.

SITE INFORMATION

SITE APPLE CREEK WOOSTER
SOIL TYPE CANFIELD SILT LOAM CANFIELD SILT LOAM  
SOIL TEST (pH,P,K) 7.4, 116, 233 6.9, 45, 153  
PREVIOUS CROP BARLEY/DOUBLE CROP SOYBEAN RED CLOVER  
PLANTING /HARVEST DATES MAY 24 / NOV 15 MAY 25 / NOV 16  
TILLAGE CONVENTIONAL TILLAGE CONVENTIONAL TILLAGE  
NUTRIENTS APPLIED (N,P,K) M-3 ppm 148, 227, 265 129, 191, 222  
COOPERATOR GERALD REID/KEN SCAIFE, OARDC GERALD REID/KEN SCAIFE, OARDC
COUNTY WAYNE WAYNE  

MEASUREMENTS AND RECORDS

YIELD. The center two rows of each plot were harvested with a self propelled two row picker sheller combine. Yields were reported as bushels of grain per acre (Bu/A) at 15.5 percent moisture.

MOISTURE (HARV MST). A grain moisture determination was made from each plot with an electrical conductance moisture meter. Grain moisture was reported as percent grain moisture.

LODGING (STK LDG). The number of broken stalks in each plot was determined just prior to harvest. Only those plants with a stalk broken below the ear were considered stalk lodged. Stalk lodging was reported as a percentage of final plant stand.

FINAL STAND (FINAL STD). Seed corn producers selected a desired planting rate for each hybrid entered. Differences between the planting rate and the final stand may be attributed to seed quality and/or environmental conditions present. Populations were reported in hundreds (100/A) per acre.

EMERGENCE (EMG). An emergence count was made on each plot after plant emergence. The emergence percentage was computed based on the number of plants and the number of seed planted, and was reported as a percentage of the seeds planted.

TEST WEIGHT (TW). Test weights were recorded in pounds per bushel on grain samples at field moisture. The results are an average of all sites in the regional tests.

LSD 0.10 - Least Significant Differences at probability level 0.10 (LSD 0.10) are reported for yield and other agronomic characteristics. Differences between hybrids are significant only if they are equal to or greater than the LSD value. If a given hybrid out yields another hybrid by as much or more than the LSD value, then we are 90% confident (i.e. the odds are 10:1) that the yield difference is real, with only a 10% probability that the difference is due to chance variation (such as soil variation, etc.). For example, if Hybrid X is 19 Bu/A higher in yield than Hybrid Y, then this difference is statistically significant if the LSD is 19 Bu/A or less. If the LSD is 20 Bu/A or greater, then we are less confident that Hybrid X is really higher yielding than Hybrid Y under conditions of the test. If ‘NS’ is indicated for a characteristic, then the differences among hybrid entries are not significant at the 10% probability level.

2019 GROWING CONDITIONS

The spring of 2019 was one the wettest on record and resulted in major planting delays throughout Ohio. According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, only 33% of Ohio's corn was planted by June 2. The Organic OCPT fields were planted May 24th and 25th into fields with optimal soil moisture & temperature for uniform emergence and early growth. Frequent rain events continued into June limiting weed control opportunities. Timely rains in August and September, combined with above average temperatures, were favorable for corn development and extended the grain fill period. Diplodia ear rot was observed in a few hybrids at low levels. Stalk lodging, while present, was generally one or two nodes below the ear node and did not impact harvestability for most hybrids. The Wooster/Apple Creek areas were fortunate and missed most of the weather extremes experienced in other parts of Ohio. Excellent conditions throughout the growing season minimized stress.

RESULTS

Results of the 2019 testing program are presented in Tables 1 and 2. The seed source and table location for hybrids are shown in Table 3. The seed treatments associated with each hybrid entry (information provided by seed companies) are indicated in Table 3. Yields and other agronomic performance characteristics have been averaged across the individual test sites and shown under the SUMMARY heading for each maturity group. Hybrids are listed in alphabetical order by brand.

Despite delayed planting dates, above normal rainfall and warmer than normal conditions during grain fill, Organic OCPT yields exceeded expectations. Averaged across hybrid entries in the early and full season tests, yields were 236 bu/A. Yields at individual test sites, averaged across hybrid entries in the early and full season tests, ranged from 232 bu/A at Apple Creek to 240 bu/A at Wooster.

Acknowledgments: We thank Kevin and Sue Hennis for proposing the Organic Corn Performance Test and for working with their industry contacts to promote hybrid submission. Thank you to the organic seed industry for their contributions and support of this new endeavor. We are grateful for the assistance provided by Gerald Reid, Organic Farm Manager with field operations, and Ken Scaife and Mike Sword, OSU-OARDC Wooster.

All educational programs conducted by Ohio State University Extension are available to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, gender, age, disability or Vietnam era veteran status. Dr. Jacqueline Wilkins, interim director, OSU Extension. TDD No. 800 589 8292 (Ohio only) or 614 292 1868