Technology Times

Spray Volume is Critical for Postemergence Herbicides

By Bob Hartzler, Professor of Agronomy, Iowa State University
Dr. H. Mark Hanna, Scientist II, Iowa State University Read more

Study Shows Crop Prices, Climate Variables Affect Yield, Acreage

When corn prices increase farmers reap higher yields by making changes. According to a recent University of Illinois study, about one-third of the yield increase derives from more intensive management practices and two-thirds from cropping additional acreage. Agricultural economist Madhu Khanna says the findings dampen the ongoing debate about the food price and land use changes due to corn ethanol. Read more

Purdue Startup Commercializes Soil-Mapping Technology to Improve Crops, Increase Yields

Phillip R. Owens, from left, Purdue University associate professor of agronomy, and doctoral graduate Jenette Ashtekar, compare a soil sample in an auger to a functional soil map on a digital tablet. The function soil mapping technology is being commercialized by Agsoil Analytics, which is using the technology to help farmers improve crop management and yields, by better understanding the functionality of their soil.An agricultural startup is commercializing a Purdue University innovation that could help farmers improve crop management and yields by better understanding how their soil functions. Read more

Sub-Surface Drip Irrigation a Possible Solution for some Georgia Peanut Farmers

Sub-surface drip irrigation gets implemented in a field at Stripling Irrigation Research Park in Camilla, Georgia. Image credit: Wes Porter/UGA.Drip irrigation systems have long helped Georgia vegetable farmers grow high yielding crops. Sub-surface drip irrigation can help some Georgia peanut farmers water their crops more efficiently, according to a University of Georgia Cooperative Extension expert. And, it won't interfere with peanut digging equipment.

While not suitable for all peanut fields, sub-surface drip irrigation could be used in smaller fields with irregular shapes where pivots are unable to reach or in plots with dry corners. Read more

Australian Seed Destructor Could be Answer for Midwest Farmers

It’s a piece of equipment that probably isn’t on many Midwest farmers’ radars at this time, but could eventually be a new tool against the growing herbicide-resistant weed problem, said a University of Illinois crop scientist.

With the effectiveness of many herbicide options being compromised due to the evolution of weed resistance and no new products on the immediate horizon, Aaron Hager said now is the time to look at non-chemical tactics that can be integrated into a management system. Read more

Cornfield’s ‘Cool’ Block O Designed to Spur Conversations on Precision Ag Potential

This cornfield bordering I-70 at The Ohio State University’s Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio, was planted with two hybrids of different maturity dates and tassel colors. Taken July 23, the image shows the Block O hybrid has not yet tasseled, causing it to appear deeper green than the other hybrid. The project demonstrates technology newly available this year allowing the planting of two different hybrids in the same field to maximize yields. Photo: College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental SciencesThis cornfield bordering I-70 at The Ohio State University’s Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio, was planted with two hybrids of different maturity dates and tassel colors. Taken July 23, the image shows the Block O hybrid has not yet tasseled, causing it to appear deeper green than the other hybrid. The project demonstrates technology newly available this year allowing the planting of two different hybrids in the same field to maximize yields. Photo: College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

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Ag's Next Frontier? Growing Plants in Space.

Space may not be the final frontier for Anna-Lisa Paul and Robert Ferl; they want to grow plants there. Because, who knows, we may one day try to live on Mars, and to survive, we’ll have to grow our own food.

Thus far, experiments by the two pioneering scientists have proven so successful that, earlier this month, NASA recognized their research with one of its three awards in the category of the Most Compelling Results. Paul and Ferl have been conducting plants-in-space research for 20 years. Read more

Adapt-N Changes When We Apply Nitrogen

Nitrogen management in corn is an important consideration for corn producers. With the rising costs of inputs and concerns of the overuse of fertilizers, now more than ever it is vital that growers maximize their bushels per acre with the least amount of inputs as possible.

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Plant Breeder Boosts Soybean Diversity, Develops Soybean Rust-Resistant Plant

Research geneticist Ram Singh crossed soybean with a related wild, perennial plant from Australia, introducing new genetic diversity to the soybean plant. Photo by L. Brian Stauffer.It took decades of painstaking work, but research geneticist Ram Singh managed to cross a popular soybean variety (“Dwight” Glycine max) with a related wild perennial plant that grows like a weed in Australia, producing the first fertile soybean plants that are resistant to soybean rust, soybean cyst nematode and other pathogens of soy.

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Irrigation Pressure Regulation

Our team has traveled all over the USA and across the globe, and noticed two strange things when it comes to pressure regulation: some growers will tell you that it’s the best way to save water and energy, while others will claim it’s nothing but a waste of time and money unless you have sloped fields.

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