xt7cvd6p1712 https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt7cvd6p1712/data/mets.xml   Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station. 1946 journals kaes_circulars_004_433 English Lexington : The Service, 1913-1958. This digital resource may be freely searched and displayed.  Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically.  Physical rights are retained by the owning repository.  Copyright is retained in accordance with U. S. copyright laws.  For information about permissions to reproduce or publish, contact the Special Collections Research Center. Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station Circular (Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station) n. 433 text Circular (Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station) n. 433 1946 2014 true xt7cvd6p1712 section xt7cvd6p1712 E I"i Ii
 { O • .` i  
 g Igh Yields of Corn Per Acre are _ g  
  Results of a Statewide Corn-Growing ` ‘ T A Y
  Demonstration in Kentucky, 1946 l    
  _ By W. C. jouusrouz ` "
  {   I A
 in ` ‘·
 — Circulor 433
§ Els College of Agriculture and Home Economics ,  
L Agricultural Extension Division i  
  Thomas P. Cooper, Dean and Director  

OVER 2,000 FARMERS in 87 counties took part in the 1946 "Ken- {mm
  tucky Corn Derby," a program planned to arouse general interest corn
` in high corn yields and to bring out the practical ways of producing Farm
more corn per acre. A state average of 40 bushels of corn per acre F
was set as a goal to be reached in Kentucky by 1960. ln only two plum
previous years (1942 and 1945) had the Kentucky average been as marc
high as 30 bushels per acre. of fe
‘ high
2 of 7l
The 10 High Yields in Each Class ithe
Yields in these corn—growing demonstrations were checked by _ incre
county committees, according to instructions issued by the Exten- busi
sion Division of the College of Agriculture and Home Economics, Gere
University of Kentucky, and were based on 14% percent moisture tial
content. Of the total participants, 401 had yields of 100 bushels or End
more per acre. The 10 high producers in each class, and their yields,
' were as follows: cm;
1-Acre Class 5-Acre Class l {Gm
_ com
Name County Yield Name County Yield Gbll
bus. bus. run-
W. A. Scott, Carlisle ................ 164.0 Everett Simpson, Bullitt ............ 155.l tile
Wm. Ray York, Jackson ............ 163.3 Sammy Winders, Crittenden ...... 147.0 ` $011:
Ernest Smith, Russell ................ 161.5 Mark Greenwell, Union ............ 144.2 hun
Wm. Luther Sturgill, Jackson .... 153.3 John Moser, Oldham ................ 14l.7 lurr
Willie Shephard, Magoffin ........ 151.2 G. C. Wilson, Davies ................ 141.2 J cull
Herbert Wilson, Owsley ............ 149.7 Carl Chaney, Warren ................ 140.2 tha
John C. Overstreet, Boyle ........ 149.6 Karl Moser, Jefferson .............. 137.l COn
P. E. Hughes, Marion ................ 149.4 Milford Napier, Harlan ............ 135-2 Frm
Homer Riley, Jackson .............. 149.2 Stark Bros., Nelson .................. 1345 mg
- Joe Grant Neal, Johnson ........ 147.3 Willis Stout, Jefferson .............. 13*142  
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 How the High Yields Were Grown
Fertile soil, plenty of moisture, and good seed of high-yielding
kinds, enough plants per acre, and level land or moderate slopes
(en- farmed on the contour accounted for the high yields in the 1946
arest corn growing demonstration.
cmg Fertile soil
Gm For corn production the soil must have plenty of humus and of
tW° plant foods. Though fertility involves more than amount of com-
rn as mercial fertilizer used, there was a close relation between amount
of fertilizer used and yield. In Simpson county, for example, the l0
high producers, who averaged l l4 bushels per acre used an average
of 798 pounds of fertilizer per acre. The l0 low producers, on the
other hand, averaged 55 bushels per acre and 205 pounds of ferti-
lizer per acre. In McCracken county a prize offered for the greatest
rd by increase in yield was won by a 4-H club boy who produced 65
(ten. bushels on an untreated check acre and l35 bushels on his treated
mcs, acre. The treated acre was fertilized with 500 pounds of 47-percent
triple superphosphate, 200 pounds of ammonium nitrate, and 50
sture . . . .
pounds of muriate of potash, and in addition a cover crop of vetch
ilidol and rye was turned under and l0 loads of manure were spread.
1e s,
Conservation of moisture
Without enough moisture a high corn yield is impossible. A
farmer can do nothing to control rainfall, but he can do much to
____ control the water after it falls. Farming practices affect both the
Yield Gbility of the soil to hold moisture and the rote and amount of water
bus. run-off. Practices that build up fertility help to hold moisture. Fer-
.155.1 · tile soils do not suffer from drouth as soon or as much as infertile
.147.0 soils, and humus soils hold moisture better than soils lacking in
.144.2 . humus. Early rather than late plowing (unless a cover crop is to be
.141.7 turned under), thorough preparation of the seedbed, and shallow
.141,2 cultivation are all moisture—saving practices. On land with more
,140.2 ll1Gn a 2-percent slope, plowing, planting, and cultivating on the
.137.1 contour save run-off water, letting it soak into the soil. This in-
..135.2 creases corn yields 6 to 8 bushels an acre in most seasons. Terrac-
.134.5 ing also saves water. Of the 244 entrants in l946 who planted corn
..134.0 On sloping land, ll3 used contour cultivation and l2 had terraces
[ 3 ]

 Kind of corn planted
All but 7 of the 401 growers who produced 1OO or more bushels
of corn per acre in the 1946 demonstration used hybrid corn. Of
those who used hybrids, 327 used Kentucky-grown seed, practically
all of which was certified, and 67 used closed—pedigree hybrids.
I Number of plants per acre
For the highest yields, corn must be planted thick enough to
make full use of plant food and moisture. This was made clear in
the 1946 demonstrations, When the records were grouped accord-
ing to number of plants per acre the averageyields were as follows:
V l-Acre Class 5-Acre Class
Stalks per acre Bushels Number Bushels Number
per acre reporting per acre reporting
Under 8,000 ............................ 78.4 169 82.1 64
8-10,000 ............................ 95.8 200 95.9 100
10-12,000 ............................ 106.6 163 106.6 45
12-14,000 ............................ 115.3 67 115.7 23
Over 14,000 ............................ 121.8 38 122.7 8
lt should be remembered that the high—yield plots were very fertile.
Without high fertility it is useless to have a high plant population
per acre. Some plots in the 1946 demonstrations had too many
plants for the fertility and moisture of the soil. Nevertheless it is
clear from the results that a large majority of Kentucky farmers
who have been building up the fertility of their soil and are growing
adapted hybrids, have too few plants per acre to make full use of
fertility and moisture in an average season. In the demonstrations
this year, a large number of plants per acre with relatively small
ears made higher yields than fewer plants with larger ears.
Choice of land for corn
By choosing wel|—lying land, building up its fertility, using good
farming practices, and planting adapted hybrid seed, farmers gen-
erally can raise more corn on fewer acres. Especially in the moun-
tain counties, entrants in the 1946 corn demonstrations grew on
good land, properly drained, fertilized, and cultivated, 8 to 10 times
as much corn per acre as the average in the county. In Owsley coun-
ty, for example, Herbert Wilson produced 149.7 bushels per acre on
his bottomland acre, and the better—drained part of this plot pro-
duced at the rate of almost 200 bushels per acre. Yields of corn on

 typical hillsides in the county were generally under 20 bushels per co
acre, as checked by County Agent H, M. Williams. ins
Do High Corn Yields Pay? fe~
ln 1946 the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station studied X]
the cost of producing corn in 5 counties, comparing records of 65 hr
entries in the 5—Acre Class in the corn-growing demonstrations and G
on 44 other farms not entered in the demonstrations but considered Cm
to be typical. Corn yields on the 5-acre demonstrations on the 65 ml
farms averaged 85 bushels per acre and on the 44 typical farms the _
yields averaged 47 bushels per acre. The high-yield group used 3 ""‘
times as much fertilizer and had 50 percent more plants per acre. U"
More of their corn (62 percent as compared with 27 percent for the lO`
low-yield group) was on level upland or bottomland and more of 'lc
them used hybrid seed. Most of the land in both groups had been
limed. Very little manure was used on the land in either group.
Weather in all the counties during the growing season was very
favorable for corn production.
Some of the production figures on these farms were as follows:
5-Acre Typical
Averages Demonstration Farms
(65 Farms) (44 Farms)
Corn yield per acre, bushels ............,........... 85 47
Value of com per acre, at $1.25 per bushel .. $106.25 $58.75
Total cost of production per acre ................ 33.32 22.58
Difference between value and cost per acre $72.93 $36.17
Number of plants per acre .......................... 8,577 5,772
Fertilizer nitrogen used, pounds per acre ...... 28 3
Phosphoric acid used, pounds per acre ........ 78 31
Potash used, pounds per acre ...................... 17 7
Cost per acre for fertilizer and manure
(included in total cost, above) ............ $17.02 $5.05
Bushels corn produced per hour of
man labor .......................................... 5.1 2.3
Cost of production, per bushel (not including
charge for use of land or cost of cover
crops) .................................................. 39.5 cents 48 cents
Yes, it pays to produce high yields of corn. Forty—seven bushels
per acre is a "good" yield of corn ln Kentucky, well above the state if
average in l946. Yet on these 109 farms it cost 8.5 cents less per CZ
bushel, on the average, to produce 85 bushels per acre than to pro- QQ}
duce 47. Figuring the corn at $l.25 a bushel, returns above total MB
[ 5 ]

 costs were $47.50 more per acre, on the average, on the high-yield  
ing farms than on the lower-yielding farms. s I
High yields also pay in other ways. By growing more com on =
fewer acres a farmer can rearrange his cropping system to best od-
vantage, growing on each kind of land the crops best suited toil. V
And by growing more corn per hour of man labor used on the crop
. he can have more time for other enterprises. Higher yields per acre I
and per hour of work bring the opportunity for expansion inthe Y
total volume of farm business. it
ln practically all businesses two of the most important factors E
in determining success are (l) volume of business and (2) cost per  f
unit. Higher yields per acre and per hour of work combined with  
lower cost of production per bushel are sure to mean more prot  *
itable farming.  
Lexington, Kentucky AP1'll» llll  
Cooperative Extension Work in Agriculture and Home Economics: College of A8!l¤¤ll“l‘  
and Home Economics, University ot Kentucky, and the United States Department of ·‘\!llj$ ·
culture, cooperating. Thomas P. Cooper, Director. Issued in iurtherunoe oi the A¤i5°·  
May 8 and June 30, 1914.  g ;
2ou»4·l 5 
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