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Title:Response to planting density for corn hybrids grown under narrow and conventional row spacing
Author(s):Bandy, Bradley
Advisor(s):Below, Frederick E.
Department / Program:Crop Sciences
Discipline:Crop Sciences
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Plant Density
Row Spacing
Yield Componets
Abstract:Over the past 80 years, increases in corn grain yield have occurred concomitantly with greater plant densities. In order to maintain steady improvements in grain yield, greater plant densities will need to be managed with population tolerant hybrids and narrower row spacing (e.g., 51 cm vs. 76 cm rows). Narrowing corn rows relieves intra-row competition, and provides the plant with a more equidistant arrangement, this allows the roots more ample space to explore for water and nutrients, and it also allows for more light penetration into the lower canopy. Previous research has shown inconsistent results with regards to narrow rows with mostly insignificant to small yield increases reported. In addition to row spacing, optimum plant densities have also been highly contested, and are likely dependent on weather in a given year, and individual hybrid tolerances to population stress. A study was conducted across three site-years using narrow (51 cm) and conventional (76 cm) row spacing and five plant densities (62, 74, 86, 99, and 111 plants ha-1 x 1000). Seed availability in each year did not allow for a consistent set of hybrids to be grown across all three locations, as a result, 20 hybrids were grown in 2012 and 24 hybrids were grown in 2013. Narrow row spacing did not significantly increase yield at any location, though narrower rows tended to yield more at higher planting densities (> 99,000 plants ha-1), and tended to yield less in lower than optimum planting densities (< 76,000 plant ha-1). Differential hybrid responses to row spacing and planting density were also observed with some hybrids producing greater yield in narrow rows and few hybrids indicating producing lower yields in narrow rows. In general, hybrids that performed well in conventional row spacing also performed well in a narrow row system.
Issue Date:2014-05-30
Rights Information:Copyright 2014 Bradley Bandy
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-05-30
Date Deposited:2014-05

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