Yieldmasters announced in Dairyland Seed contests
By Heather Thorstensen
Date Modified: 03/29/2012 10:10 AM
WEST BEND, Wis. — An Iowa soybean grower had the highest soybean yield in the state and nation in Dairyland Seed's annual Yieldmaster contest.
Loras McQuillen of Holy Cross, Iowa, had a yield of 98.02 bushels per acre with the variety DSR-234/RR.
He also took first place in Dairyland's statewide corn yield contest with 265.20 bushels per acre with Stealth-9006.
The National Corn Yieldmaster title went to Edge of Night Farms of Stockton, Ill. The farm had 296.86 bushels per acre with Stealth-9006.
Ron and Brenda Nelson of Aurora, came in second place in Iowa for both corn and soybeans. Their corn yield was 256.72 bushels per acre with Stealth-9410. Their soybean yield was 75.41 bushels per acre with DSR-2011/RR.
Brenda said 2011 may have been one of the best years they have seen in nearly 40 years at their farm in terms of yields for both crops.
"There really weren't any bad yields in our area to speak of," said Brenda.
The weather cooperated by providing rain when it was needed after dry summer conditions.
Brenda credits their high yields mostly to the improvement in seed hybrids. The Nelsons help improve seed by growing new Dairyland varieties on their farm in test plots.
"Dairyland is a great company to work with," said Brenda.
The Nelsons use minimum tillage and prepare their corn field using hog manure. They side-dress with commercial fertilizer. On the soybean plot, they had 200 pounds of pot ash per acre.
Their corn had the YieldGard VT3 Triple stack technology with rootworm resistance, European corn borer resistance and glyphosate tolerance. The rootworm control was excellent, Brenda said.
"The corn was a variety that we've used for three to four years and it's consistently done well for us," she said.
The soybean variety was new to the their farm. They picked it based on its success in trials.
The Nelsons grow approximately 230 acres of crops and like to participate in the Yieldmaster contest for the test results and other data they receive.
According to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, Iowa's average yield for corn in 2011 was 172 bushels per acre. Soybeans statewide had an average yield of 50.5 bushels per acre.
First place in Minnesota's Corn Yieldmaster contest went to Ross Kramer of Fountain with 228.77 bushels per acre with Stealth-9799. In second place was Boyd Gasner of Eyota with 224.89 bushels per acre.
The Minnesota Soybean Yieldmasters are brothers Wayne and Doug Rossbach of Hanska. They used DSR-1710/R2Y and had a yield of 61.84 bushels per acre.
It's been approximately five years since they've had as high of a yield, said Doug. The whole farm's soybean average was 47 bushels per acre.
"It was a very challenging growing season," he said.
They had little rain after the middle of July, then an early freeze.The contest's soybeans were on a hill, so perhaps that saved them from freeze damage, he said.
He credits the high yield partly to two applications of turkey manure on the field in the last three years.
The variety they used has resistance to soybean cyst nematode, a high score for iron chlorosis, high tolerance to white mold and resistance to phytophthora root rot, according to Dairyland general manager Tom Strachota.
Depending on where growers are in Minnesota, white mold may be one of their top concerns, Strachota said.
Second place for Minnesota soybeans went to Bob Schefers of Sartel, who grew 51.46 bushels per acre.
Minnesota's corn fields had an average yield in 2011 of 156 bushels. The soybean average was 38.5 bushels.
Winners in the contest receive plaques and a certificate to purchase Dairyland Seed products.