How do you make data pay?  The data will lead you to management decisions that make a difference to your bottom line.

What hybrid should I plant?  That decision is made each year on my farm by looking over the performance of the ones I have planted on each farm.  I run a number of side by side trials with different hybrids, so I have a good idea of how each performs on different types of soils, etc.

Let me show you a couple of maps of this year’s data, to illustrate why this is so important.

Below is a map of the different hybrids I planted on a field this year.  I won’t name the exact hybrids used, as that isn’t important to the example.

Below is the yield map from the same field this year.  The different hybrids show up quite well in a streaking pattern.

So, how much difference is there in different hybrids?  There were 4 different hybrids on this farm – 3 from one company, one from a different company.  The one hybrid from the second company yielded 20.58 bushels less than the top number in the field, and 11.8 bushels less than the 3rd place number.  For calculating the math, I will use the average yield of the rest of the field, excluding the low hybrid that I am comparing against, which was 15.96 bushels per acre less than the rest of the field average.

Not only is this great information for you to understand what numbers work on your farm, you also can lean on your seed guy with real data to show how his product performed.

How did this pay?   15.96 bushels per acre X 18.22 acres that this hybrid got planted on = 290.79 bushels X $6.00 / bushel = $1744.74, or $95.75 PER ACRE on the acres that this hybrid was planted to.

Maybe the low cost seed wasn’t such a bargin after all…………