Home > Maize Yield Records Broken with HSR

Maize Yield Records Broken with HSR

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article image All Winners (left to right): John Richardson, Orbost, Vic; Hannibal Maize; Alissa Howesion in Olympiad maize at Colin Seidel's, Mt Gambier, SA

Victorian growers have once again broken Australian maize yield records. An outstanding crop of Olympiad and Hannibal maize varieties, marketed by HSR Seed companies Snowy River Seeds and Hylan Seeds, has achieved a yield of just over 514 tonnes of grain (14% moisture) from 24.5 hectares (60.5 acres).

The average yield across the area is equivalent to 21 tonnes/hectare or 8.5 tonnes/acre. This is equivalent to Australia's top end yield of 21 Mt/ha achieved at Boort, Victoria, in 2004 and not far behind the best yields from the USA, which were 21.6 t/ha.

Grown by John & Mandy Richardson at Orbost in the south east of Gippsland, Victoria, the crop was part of a 52 hectare block that had been initially planted for silage.

The wet silage yield had been coming in at around 69 Mt/ha (27Mt Dm/ha) and it was then decided to let part of the paddock run through for grain production.

John & Mandy are very experienced growers who have gained much valuable management expertise from growing seed production crops for Snowy River Seeds.

Over a number of years, the Richardsons have produced hybrid sweet corn and field maize seed, as well as commercial silage and grain crops.

John believes there are no real secrets to growing top end yield maize - it is simply a matter of following a complete management programme and sticking with it.

This crop was given every chance with a full watering programme and all necessary inputs, but was not treated any differently to other maize crops he has grown over the years.

John does believe in paying attention to the details and tried to ensure that the maize plants have the opportunity to express their full genetic potential by not limiting them.

The crop received 440 kg/ha of Apollo Crop Lift as base fertilizer, 375 kg/ha 20:0:16 as a first side dress four weeks after emergence and 370 kg Urea as a second side dress two to three weeks later.

John applied six irrigations of 25 ML, supplied by laterals and irrigated on average every 10 days. This is equivalent to 2.88 ML/ha or a Water Use Efficiency of 7.29 (for every ML 7.29 t of grain was produced).

The herbicide program consisted of 3.2 litres Primextra and 1 litre Dual Gold, band sprayed per hectare and followed up with 3.75 lt Linuron + 3.75 lt Oil drop arm sprayed in between the rows.

For soil insect control, the seed was treated with Cruiser pre-planting and 1 litre Lorsban was applied with the herbicide application.

John is adamant that green manure crops are a major contributor towards achieving optimum yields through maintaining sustainable Nitrogen levels in the soil and keeping weed populations down.

Legumes are vital in his crop rotation programme and this paddock had been sown previously to faba beans, which were subsequently ploughed in.

John believed that it is essential to maintain an extremely healthy and active soil profile to ensure long term fertility and sustainability.

Corn Product Manager for Snowy River Seeds, Dean Fry, is particularly pleased with the Olympiad and Hannibal maize crop.

"This is a terrific result and a great example of what is achievable when good farmers do everything right with top end yielding hybrids. Both Olympiad and Hannibal are virutally new to many Australian maize growers and this result backs up, even further, the excellent trial results and commercial performance to date of both varieties. To average such a yield across such a large area is just an outstanding performance from the growers - John and Mandy Richardson must be congratulated.

“Being an Australian Seed company, Snowy River Seeds have had a major local breeding programme in place which is certainly proving successful.

“We have been undertaking a rigorous local evaluation programme across all the major growing areas of Australia and New Zealand with a number of new varieties, including some of which have been sourced from leading maize seed companies worldwide.

“We are fortunate that a number of leading maize growers are adopting these new varieties across these main growing areas, as the results speak for themselves," said Dean.

Snowy River Seeds and Hylan Seeds are joint marketing Olympiad, Hannibal and a complete range of other maize varieties this season Australia wide.

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