Proceedings 2004

Indiana Crop Adviser Conference

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Strip Tillage for Corn: New Developments for Successful Adoption

Recent developments have made the strip tillage system an even better option for corn farmers in the Eastern CornBelt. The equipment itself is now better at operating consistently at a prescribed depth and in building uniform “berms” of soil in the intended row zones. Fertilizer banding attachments with strip-till toolbars now provide farmers with new options in banding of P and K fertilizers with or without nitrogen.. Automatic guidance systems on the tractors that pull strip-till tools now enable farmers to use strip-till implements that are narrower than their planter while enhancing corn row positioning directly over the loosened zones at planting time. This presentation will emphasize some of the well-known advantages of strip-till systems (i.e. warmer and drier soils in spring, more planting flexibility), but it will add (a) our recent experiences with strip-till relative to no-till and conventional-till for corn after corn or soybean, (b) what we learned from banding P and K fertilizers to various depths in high-yield corn systems, and (c) how this system can result in more consistent corn growth than other tillage systems.

Tony Vyn Professor and Cropping Systems Extension Agronomist
Purdue University

Biography: Tony J. Vyn is a Professor and Cropping Systems Extension Agronomist in the Department of Agronomy at Purdue University. Dr. Vyn grew up on a hog and cash crop farm near Chatham in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. He earned his degrees from the University of Guelph, (in Guelph, Ontario) and was a faculty member in the Crop Science Department at the same university from 1987 until he left for Purdue University in 1998. Dr. Vyn advises several graduate students in research focused on understanding the interactions of conservation tillage, crop rotation, and nutrient placement systems with soil properties and crop response. His current investigations include fall strip tillage and other stale-seedbed planting systems, carbon sequestration, temperature-sensitive polymer coatings for corn seeds, spatial and plant-to-plant variability in corn, and deep banding versus broadcast placement of fertilizers for corn and soybean in intended high yield environments. In addition to research, Dr. Vyn has major extension responsibilities. In the past year he has been an invited speaker at agricultural conferences in several states within the United States, and in other countries (including Argentina, Brazil and Canada). He also serves as Extension Coordinator for the Agronomy Department at Purdue and as Associate Editor for the Crop Science Journal. In his spare time, he particularly enjoyed cash-crop farming with his own family from 1980 to 1998. More specific information is available on his home page.