Agronomy Talk

Agronomy Update

Know Your Numbers - Seed Selection

Published on Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The third and final installment of Know Your Numbers - Making Profitable Decisions in 2015 is Seed Selection.

So how can seed selection affect profit?
1. Right product for YOU.
2. Right trait.

Use your imagination for a minute:


You and I are flying to Hawaii for vacation. We have two options for which plane we fly in. Plane #1 has been in service 25 years, never broke down, proven, consistent track record and will retire to the junk yard when we get back. Plane #2 is state-of-the-art brand new never been flown but all tests show it to be the best flight available. It has all the amenities you would want. Which plane would you choose? Which hybrids do you choose? Proven track record or newest genetics? Seed selection is all about risk.

The Ohio State Buckeyes Football team over the last century has a win rate of about 70%. That is a great win rate, but they don’t win every time. No hybrid wins every time and the best hybrids in the industry only win 65-70% of the time. As your seed company we can help you be more profitable by choosing consistent hybrids in 2015 and the right hybrid for your farm.

Three main factors in hybrid selection are:
1. Yield level
2. Plant Population
3. When do you harvest?

You aren’t expected to know our entire lineup, but your Beck’s Dealer can prescribe the right hybrid for you by knowing what your field’s yield potential is, what population you plant, and how soon you harvest (standability needs).

Corn: In Ohio we have seen a very significant movement to corn with less or no traits. Two reasons why are we have had less to little insect pressure in many areas and the cost is less and there are sometimes premiums available for Non-GMO corn. It is important to have the right trait for your area and rotation. But if you don’t have enough insect pressure to see a payback on the traits then we have Non-GMO hybrids offered from our newest genetic lines such as 5140, 5828, 5939, and 6158. $36+/acre less seed cost with conventional corn scouting for insect pressure and monitoring future pressure becomes much more important when doing without the insurance of yield protection that traits offer us.

Soybeans: Let’s look at how the system cost of LibertyLink® compares to Glyphosate Tolerant. 


Clean Fields- Priceless.
Beck’s Hybrids Dealer Phil Sease of Arcanum, OH tells us about his experience switching to the LibertyLink® system on his own farm four years ago in this audio interview with Seed Advisor Dennis Henry. (Marestail and Ragweed were the challenge prior to switching.)

These are all ways that seed selection can possibly improve profitability. Have a great week!


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Alex Johnson

Alex Johnson

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