Deeper Roots, Strong Yield With Drought-Tolerant Corn

Melissa SandfortAgribusiness, Corn, Research

A root comparison study conducted this season at Monsanto’s Gothenburg Water Utilization Learning Center in Gothenburg, Neb., provided a dramatic demonstration of just how important a deep, strong root structure is to help corn plants withstand drought conditions.

The research program evaluated the performance of a DEKALB® drought-tolerant corn product versus two competitor products – a Pioneer® Optimum® AQUAmax™ hybrid and a shallow-rooted product. A root dig conducted in mid-September showed that the DEKALB product had a significantly deeper, more evenly spread root structure than the other two products.

The result was healthier ears and a yield advantage for DEKALB of 12 bu./A versus Pioneer Optimum AQUAmax and 15 bu./A versus the shallow-rooted product.

This December DEKALB will continue a tradition of introducing innovative new products with the stewarded introduction of Genuity® DroughtGard™ Hybrids in the Western Great Plains for 2013 planting. These products combine the DEKALB brand’s drought-tolerant genetics, developed through the brand’s industry leading breeding program, with the industry’s first drought-tolerant biotech trait and agronomic practices. The DEKALB DroughtGard Hybrids available for planting in 2013 delivered farmers more than 5 bu./A versus competitor products in field trails this year.

Click here to see time-lapse photos of the root dig and video interviews with the participants.