If you’re looking to experiment with corn planting populations yet this spring, check out a very good paper on plant population compiled by South Dakota State University researchers Gregg Carlson, Paul Gaspar and David Clay.
Many agronomists and producers conduct experiments that test the impact of rates of fertilizer, population, or pesticide on yield. To analyze this data we need to conduct a yield response analysis. Agronomists and or producers that understand yield response and how to use yield response to determine the point of optimum economic return will be able to make better management decisions. The point of optimum economic return is determined by:
1. Conducting a yield response experiment
2. Converting the yield response data to a functional relationship,
outputcorn yield = f(input the plant population)
3. Using calculus to determine where the change in the value of the input equals the change in the value of the output.
In site-specific farming, scientists have found that yield response relationships may change spatially and temporally.
To learn more, read the paper “Using Yield Response Analysis to Calculate an Optimum Plant Population“.