“Decisions about which variety to grow, the appropriate seed rate and the optimum harvest date greatly influence the return on investment in a maize crop. Our new app helps growers make the best decisions, whether they’re growing for forage or AD,” comments Tim Richmond. LG Maize Manager UK and Ireland.
Suitable for android and IOS phones, and downloadable from both the Apple and Google Play stores, the app is designed to be quick and easy to use and is subdivided into four sections.
Of immediate interest, as growers decide on their varieties for 2021 is the Feed Manager section which provides users with the ability to compare individual varieties for their energy output and milk production potential within a similar maturity range. The Feed Manager tool also gives a potential additional return on investment from using a specific variety for AD or livestock feed.
“With the top variety on the NIAB/BSPB list producing £774 per hectare more potential milk production than the average and with the poorest variety producing a return of £600 per hectare less milk than average, the impact of variety choice on performance and profitability can be considerable.
“By selecting varieties proven to support high milk production, farmers can reduce purchased feed costs to boost margins. The saving between the top and bottom varieties is around 2.25 tonnes of purchased feed saved per hectare of maize grown.”
The Maturity Manager section uses Ontario Heat Unit data to provide a recommended FAO range, from which varieties can be chosen to be successfully grown at the farm’s postcode.
The Sowing Manager provides a recommended seed rate and calculates the number of seed bags required for the hectarage to be drilled.
Finally, the Harvest Manager uses information on the maturity of the cob and the dry matter of the stem to determine the date when a crop will be ready for harvest, giving the farmer a more informed guide and advanced warning as to when to book his contractor.
“Using the app, growers will be able to use data to determine the optimum variety, drilling rate and harvest date to help maximise ROI from their maize through a high yield of a quality forage to drive milk production or AD performance,” Mr Richmond concludes.
To download the app, visit www.maizemanager.com and select your app store.