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Senior Advisor

Pioneer grain sorghum

I have grown nothing but Pioneer grain sorghum my entire life and have been very pleased overall.  This year I must say I am very disappointed in the lodging of the crop in every field I planted.  Far as I can tell, the lodging occurred only on areas that were moisture stressed.  In lower areas of the fields where the soil doesn't dry out as quick, I stand was excellent and according to the yield monitor was producing between 130 & 145 B/A.  A month ago I had an agronomist talk me into entering this into the NSP yield contest so I did and was very optimistic about my chances on the state level.  However, what a difference a couple of weeks can make.  After our first freeze on October 19th, all these fields were broken over unbelievably.  I have had lodging issues in the past, but nothing to this degree.  needless to say, no contest entry this year.  One of my neighbors was going to graze the stalks after harvest but with so much grain out their he is afraid his cattle will founder themselves, so he has decided to swath, rake and either bale or chop it for silage.  This is the frustrating thing about farming, had a fertility plan, herbicide plan, and even one application of insecticide and was anxious for harvest, than a giant slap in the face.  I guess that is why when we do get one of those dynamic seasons we talk about it for years to follow.

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2 Replies
Veteran Advisor

Re: Pioneer grain sorghum

Shaggy I have been using Pioneer beans for years now and next year I will be making a switch to a smaller regional company. I have nothing against Pioneer, they make a fine product but with only a 50% replant policy and higher prices compared to the regional companies 100% replant and cheaper seed.... I believe I can take the chance. I used Pioneer corn last year and wasn't overly impressed. The yield was OK but too many nice sized ears laying on the ground at harvest time. This year made even the best seed in my area look bad so I wont knock any of them. I would say the extremely wet spring, hot dry summer and back to wet for harvest made for a dismal year for some of us in the Eastern corn belt. I think we will all be ready for the calendar to switch from 2011 to 2012.

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Senior Advisor

Re: Pioneer grain sorghum

I feel the exact same way.  I'm planning on switching about half my acres to a different sorghum seed company.  As far as the internal policies go, they are relatively the same.  I have not discussed price of seed with him but he assured me it would be less expensive than Pioneer.  Going to do a side by side comparison for a couple of years and decide which seed I prefer.  My local crop consultant has said that he has noticed his pioneer customers are starting to switch away from their seed.  He said Pioneer is starting to lag behind some other competitors in the corn market.  I could not argue, because I don't produce any corn and don't plan on it any time in the near future.  I am a sorghum producer.

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