Plenty of learning at research farm
PONTIAC – Conversations with growers is what makes the Precision Planting PTI research farm near Pontiac special, as the farm does more than simply show field trials.
The 400-acre farm gives the company plenty of opportunities for testing while helping producers improve their own operations.
“We probably need a few more acres actually to get everything we want done,” admits Jason Webster, commercial agronomist for Precision Planting.
Popular trials include those dealing with nitrogen management and closing systems. They are even doing yield estimates out in the field as growers from several different states try to learn more.
“We have some data on stand counts showing consistent corn emergence within 12 hours across the field,” explained Webster. “We’ve had really good conversations with growers about what they’re using on their planter and what they’re seeing in the field.”
Precision Planting field days at the PTI farm feature three different sessions with the main goal of showing growers the foundational principles which really work across multiple environments.
Regional managers from around the country cover the basics of establishing a picket fence stand and getting uniform emergence. They are using a two-row planter this year to talk through proper furrow creation.
“That’s been a fun one for us because it seems so basic and at the same time, there are so many little mistakes that can be made,” said east central Illinois region manager Eric Huber. “If we look at it and think through it, we can avoid a lot of things on the back end.”
Another session includes members of the product support team streaming live from the field with a piece of equipment that is actually putting seed into the ground. Monitor readings are shared virtually, allowing attendees to interact with equipment in a hands-on fashion.
The two-hour agronomy segment includes Webster discussing whatever farmers want to talk about.
“Guys will spend six hours of education with us during the day and it is very common for guys to go back to the field to get more at the end of the day,” said Webster.
More on the PTI farm field days can be found at www.precisionplanting.com and by clicking on “agronomy” and “PTI.” Look for the dates with open seats or reach out to your local Precision Planting dealer.