Right after various decades of somewhat handful of innovations in planting technologies, the previous decade or so has observed exceptional leaps in each higher-tech and low-tech options for enhanced planting of corn, soybeans and other crops.

Gear companies have created systems that are more quickly and generate a lot more uniform emergence across varied situations. In a Science for Accomplishment webinar March 24, Clemson University Extension Corn and Soybean Specialist Michael Plumblee emphasized that the new technologies can raise yields, efficiency and productivity, but requirements to be utilized across commodities.

“Many of the planter technologies getting created are probably getting created and pushed actually for corn, just for the reason that it is a lot more responsive to some of the technologies getting created,” Plumblee mentioned.

A truth sheet made by the Science for Accomplishment group of Extension soybean specialists from across the nation points out that advances and availability of new planter technologies permit farmers to fine tune planting operations, optimizing seed and item placement across a wide variety of field situations.

Plumblee and the other specialists note that soybeans do not produce the exact same return on investment on planter technologies as corn, but that the technologies does not hinder soybean production or yield.

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In brief, Plumblee mentioned a farmer probably requirements to generate corn to advantage most from the technologies. Even so, he says farmers require to do their homework and create a planting method that performs ideal in their distinct operation.

Advances in planter technologies consist of variable price seeding, planter down force, in-furrow applications, row cleaners, and closing wheels. Plumblee notes 1 hot subject with all the new planting systems is higher-speed planting to cover a lot more acreage in a narrower window of time.

Higher-speed planting

Plumblee defines higher-speed planting as operating the planter in the 7 to 12 mph variety. He points out that this larger speed can perform in some of the bigger fields in the Midwest and Midsouth but will not perform in just about every production method.

“Here in South Carolina, we do a lot of strip tilling with the planter. Our field size is compact and irregularly shaped. I do not believe we could physically plant at some of these speeds. But at the exact same time in the Midsouth, exactly where planting windows are narrow and possibly gear is restricted, if we could take a six- row planter and cover the exact same quantity of acres as a 12 -row planter by doubling the speed, there’s almost certainly some worth in that moving forward,” Plumblee mentioned.

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1 advantage of the new technologies is seed singulation which is the potential of the planter to drop every single seed at the preferred spacing inside the row. Plumblee notes that soybeans are a lot more tolerant to a wide variety of planting densities and seed singulation does not usually influence soybean yield.

“Singulation is actually vital, specially in corn, exactly where we are attempting to get every single seed placed in the ground in a good uniform distance apart inside the row. In reality, we actually do not see a lot of yield influence in soybean with very good singulation like we do in corn. The caveat with that is if we are planting actually late in soybean, exactly where we may perhaps not have adequate days left and time to accumulate sunlight and heat. If we are planting late, we want to make certain the plants are spaced so they can intercept light,” Plumblee mentioned.

As for planter down force, Plumblee mentioned the technologies has been obtainable on planters for some time now, but a concentrate of the newer technologies has far better handle in reacting to distinct soil situations with down force. Down force has been created to overcome soil resistance to keep a uniform seeding depth.

Uniform seeding depth

“In theory, if we have a uniform seeding depth, we have uniform emergence with the crop. In corn, this is a quite important influence on our general yield. Uniform emergence is significantly less vital in soybeans than corn. We’ve established that,” Plumblee mentioned.

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A row cleaner is a fundamental attachment to the planter that removes any residue or trash the obstructs the planter’s potential to do its job. Plumblee mentioned row cleaners are utilized to market very good seed to soil make contact with.

“Historically, with some of the possibilities that we have had, they have been a tiny complicated to set up, specially on rolling topography. In the older systems, it took a lot of work and time to go back and preserve altering the settings. In some of these newer technologies, it created that a lot much easier,” he noted.

Plumblee mentioned row cleaners require to be distinct to every single operation to present maximum rewards and there is restricted yield response to adding a row cleaner, unless you are planting into heavy residue, a cover crop, or other situation exactly where the planter is not in a position to accurately plant the seed into the ground.

Plumblee mentioned there have been a lot more current advancements in planter closing wheels than in the other planter technologies. He mentioned the technologies and possibilities are broad with quite a few distinct combinations and designs of closing wheels.

“The aim with a closing wheel is to close the seed furrow, maximize or raise seed to soil make contact with, get rid of any air pockets that we may possibly have about that seed, and most importantly, we do not want to manipulate exactly where the seed was initially placed,” Plumblee mentioned.

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