Maize crops looking good as growth moves on apace

“After a slow start, with some difficult tight soils, maize growth this season is on the move and there are some very nice looking crops about,” says Robin Turner, Caussade’s maize specialist. “We now need a continuing period of heat and sunshine to maximise growth.”

“This excellent, even crop of Duo CS Maize in Yorkshire, planted at the end of May, is still quite small but is now growing at a rate of a foot a week. It is typical of the promising Duo maize crops we are seeing around the country with good plant populations and strong plants as we enter the stage of rapid growth.

“The potential for cob size, number of rows and numbers of grains per row is already set. All the plant has to do is grow enough to expand these, pollinate successfully, and fill the grain. From now on it is a question of the crop putting on mass and getting to the tasselling stage. Effective pollination will be determined by the weather at that stage, but the potential is there. If the good weather continues, we should see some excellent yields both for current commercial crops and for the promising new Duo CS Maize combinations we have under test.

“We now need to focus on getting the maximum feed potential from these crops by harvesting them at the right stage. This is before they get over-mature with indigestible lignified fibre and hard grains. It would be a pity to waste this potential through poor harvest management,” adds Dr Turner.

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