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Read Your Crown Roots to Increase Corn Yields

July 31, 2013
By: Rhonda Brooks, Farm Journal Seeds & Production Editor
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Agronomist Bill Bauer, B&M Consulting, shows Michigan Corn College attendees how to read their corn roots.  

Every root system tells a story, according to agronomist Bill Bauer.

Crown roots are the king of the corn-root system and tell farmers a story about yield potential each season, says Bill Bauer, agronomist, B&M Consulting, Coldwater, Mich.

Crown roots that grow straight down into the ground at a 30- to 40-degree angle help ensure your yields at harvest go up. That thought seems elementary enough and perhaps even simplistic, but the fact is too many corn crops don’t achieve that single objective.

Instead, farmers’ tillage practices often create density layers which restrict root growth and cause roots to grow horizontally. Shallow-growing roots don’t weather environmental stresses well and are unable to absorb adequate water and nutrients during the growing season.

In the following video, Bauer demonstrates how you can locate and read your crown-root growth. He shared this information with farmers who attended the 2013 Farm Journal Michigan Corn College.
 

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Thank you to the 2013 Corn College sponsors:

Agrotain, BASF, Great Plains Mfg., Novozymes, Plant Tuff, Precision Planting, SFP, Wolftrax


Catch up on full coverage of Corn College at FarmJournalCornCollege.com.

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