Picking the right hybrid for next year?

Rushing to put an order in to get the best deal is now the norm for the corn seed industry. So how do i make a decision when I have either just got my crop off the field or I am in the middle of harvest. It is difficult. This is where you really need to enlist the help of your corn dealer and company rep. Genetics is the most important production management decision you make every year. Why do we rush it? We do not know exactly what field we are putting corn into for sure yet. So how do we get this right to make the most money for your farming operation?
1) View the early order and pay as a way of securing seed supply for a number of acres. As an example – I am going to grow 400 acres of NK corn and 600 acres of NK soybeans (RR2Y) and the other acres I am going to grow a competitor. Then as a grower let your seed rep put the best package together for your farm for today based on what he knows. This allows you time to modify your order and put the correct genetics on field(s) they are adapted as you do your crop planning during the winter months. Orders can be adjusted if seed is available to allow you to grow your best crop ever.
2) Every year is different and this fall does not predict the results you will get next year. You need to use multi-year, multi-site data and do not fall into chasing the ‘hot hybrid’.
3) Select a package of diverse genetics and agronomic traits. You need high yield products to maximize your total overall yield average, plus average yield hybrids that have above average late season standability to maximize your harvest window, specialty (or niche) hybrids that excel on those special fields or conditions (corn on corn, drought soil, low productivity soil) to maintain yield in tough environmental conditions and you need economical products that yield in your operation to lower your overall cost of production.
4) Select genetically diverse products to spread risk. This is a ‘do not put all your eggs in one basket’ approach to manage the unknown growing environment for next year.
5) Remember you are selecting hybrids for next year‘s growing season not this year’s growing season. Often we get caught up in this year’s results rather than trying to get the best hybrid mix for what next year will bring. Anyone can predict the past; it takes skill and work to manage the future.

Every year is different. There is no perfect hybrid. Take you time in one of the most important decsion you make.

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