Site-specific maize sowing increases yield by 10 percent
High mass yields and good quality while avoiding strain on the nutrient balance. Reconciling these wishes expressed by maize farmers is not always easy – but it is possible. AGRAVIS NetFarming GmbH, which pools the Landwirtschaft 4.0 concepts of AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG, also offers maize farmers the chance to increase yield by up to 10 percent through site-specific maize sowing compared to standard sowing.
Influencing and generating yield
Selecting a variety that is suitable for the intended use and location lays the foundation for a good yield. With well-thought-out crop management, it is also possible to positively influence other key factors affecting yield. Much yield is lost due to ‘incorrect’ choices of sowing density, i.e. one that is not suited to the location. AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG has been carrying out precise experiments on the crop density of maize since 2014. Based on the findings from these experiments, AGRAVIS NetFarming GmbH has developed a practical system to calculate the optimum crop density and link this to site-specific approaches.
Linking optimum crop density to site-specific approaches
Remote sensing data gathered over several years has been evaluated in order to identify different yield zones at field level. Combined with data concerning the availability of water for maize sowing, the water retaining capacity of the location and an assessment of expected precipitation, a sowing map can be created on the NetFarming portal.
Observing variety-specific properties
Properties that are specific to the variety are also taken into account in the process, as these can represent enormous differences. The Niklas variety, for example, is more suited to higher sowing densities than the DKC 3507 variety. In practice, therefore, the recommended sowing densities can vary between 5.4 and 12 plants per square metre within very heterogeneous areas. Experiments have shown that this process can increase yield by up to 10 percent compared to standard sowing. Improved values have also been identified in several quality parameters.