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Agronomy 2018, 8(10), 228;

Hybrid Selection and Agronomic Management to Lessen the Continuous Corn Yield Penalty

Department of Crop Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 September 2018 / Revised: 9 October 2018 / Accepted: 12 October 2018 / Published: 16 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental and Management Factor Contributions to Maize Yield)
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Yield reductions occur when corn (Zea mays L.) is continuously grown compared to when it is rotated with soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.]; primarily due to soil nitrogen availability, corn residue accumulation, and the weather. This study was conducted to determine if a combination of agronomic practices could help overcome these causative factors of the continuous corn yield penalty (CCYP) to obtain increased corn yields. Field experiments conducted during 2014 and 2015 at Champaign, IL, U.S.A. assessed the yield penalty associated with continuous corn verses long-term corn following soybean. Agronomic management was assessed at a standard level receiving only a base rate of nitrogen fertilizer, and compared to an intensive level, which consisted of additional N, P, K, S, Zn, and B fertility at planting, sidedressed nitrogen fertilizer, and a foliar fungicide application. Two levels of plant population (79,000 verses 111,000 plants ha−1) and eight different commercially-available hybrids were evaluated each year. Across all treatments, the CCYP was 1.53 and 2.72 Mg ha−1 in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Intensive agronomic management improved grain yield across rotations (2.17 Mg ha−1 in 2014 and 2.28 Mg ha−1 in 2015), and there was a 40 to 60% greater yield response to intensive management in continuous corn verses the corn-soybean rotation, suggesting intensified management as a method to mitigate the CCYP. With select hybrids, intensive management reduced the CCYP by 30 to 80%. Agronomic management and hybrid selection helped alleviate the CCYP demonstrating continuous corn can be managed for better productivity. View Full-Text
Keywords: continuous corn yield penalty (CCYP); corn-soybean rotation; hybrid; intensive management; maize; population continuous corn yield penalty (CCYP); corn-soybean rotation; hybrid; intensive management; maize; population

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Vogel, A.M.; Below, F.E. Hybrid Selection and Agronomic Management to Lessen the Continuous Corn Yield Penalty. Agronomy 2018, 8, 228.

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