The practices that helped you reach your current yield goals won’t necessarily help you achieve the next level of success, contends Donny Carpenter. Sometimes, he says, success requires adopting new tools and technology. That was his rationale for trying a new yield enhancer, Bio-Forge, on his wheat crop in 2009. The results that year: a 12-bu.-per-acre average yield increase.
"We got a $72 return on investment for a $5 per-acre treatment [including the application]," Carpenter says.
Now, after three years of success with Bio-Forge, manufactured by Stoller USA, Carpenter plans to treat 100% of his 2012 acreage, a total of approximately 4,500 acres of cotton and corn.
"We’re in West Texas, and between windstorms, hail and other adverse conditions, anything we can do to keep the crop on an even keel we’ll do," Carpenter says.
Stoller USA reports that Bio-Forge is designed to enhance root development and yield results by minimizing the stress of factors such as high plant populations, temperature extremes, too much or too little moisture and even herbicide damage. The product can be applied as a seed treatment; a starter product in-furrow or as a foliar application with glyphosate; or in combination with late-season fungicide applications.
Carpenter says he was particularly impressed the past two years with a 4-oz.-per-acre foliar application on corn, made twice each season—just prior to the V3 growth stage and again right before V8.
He explains the importance of this application timing and how it improves corn performance: "The V3 application is useful because the plant is determining the number of rounds on that ear of corn. At V8, the plant is determining the length of the corn ear."
Carpenter notes that farmers must hit the application window correctly in order to reap the maximum benefits from the product.
"You want to apply it when about 70% to 80% of the crop is ready and not any later," he advises. "You’ve got to get it on the field when it’s time; don’t delay."
For more information about Bio-Forge, visit the company's website at www.stollerusa.com.