Maize – an Alternative to Winter Crops
MAIZE – AN ALTERNATIVE TO WINTER CROPS
Weather conditions in recent months have strongly impacted the winter rapeseed and cereal crop plantings. Last summer’s drought, followed by excessive autumn moisture prevented good crop establishment, compelling producers to turn to spring crops. Due to its many benefits, maize is one of the main choices that producers consider when making their planting decisions.
MAIZE – AN OPTION OF MANY BENEFITS
As a spring crop and good forerunner, grain maize helps diversify crop rotations and layouts. It also interrupts weed cycles, spreads weather risks among species, and staggers work.
Its treatment frequency index during crop development – which is among the lowest (and almost exclusively linked to weed control), as well as its nitrogen use efficiency (between 1,8 and 2,2 kg/q) are indisputable assets. Its technical and economic importance is undeniable in regions with good yield potential, combining high temperature sums, good moisture levels resulting from summer rainfall, and irrigation access and equipment. However, grain maize is also widely grown in non-irrigated systems, relying entirely upon precipitation (63 percent of current areas). In such conditions, it is important to control the main work stations and the crop’s productivity. Drying costs are a significant share of the proportional costs and the risk of water deficit during summer (because of drought or irrigation restrictions) may affect yields. This is why producers are increasingly looking into hybrid earliness traits that are best adapted to their local conditions.