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Wisconsin Dairymen's Association / Fortieth annual report of the Wisconsin Dairymen's Association : held at Beloit, Wis., November, 1911. Report of the proceedings, annual address of the president, and interesting essays and discussions relating to the dairy interests
(1912)

Norgord, C. F.
Silage,   pp. 12-19 PDF (1.8 MB)


Page 13


Wisconsin Dairymen's Association.
eminently above them all stands our Indian corn. Its succulent stems
and rich ears when cut in short lengths pack solidly, keep well and
form the silage eaten with the greatest relish.
GROwING THE CROP.
In growing corn for silage the distance apart of rows and plants
bears, a direct relation to the tonnage and feeding value of the crop.
When planted too far apart too much crude fibre and too large ears
and cobs result, thus making silage digested with difficulty. On the
other hand, too close planting results in light colored plants, low in
protein, lacking in substance and thus subject to great shrinking in
the silo. The fertility of the soil likewise effects the crop, hence, the
poorer the soil the farther apart the rows and plants should be placed.
For the average Wisconsin conditions, rows 3% feet apart and one
stalk every nine to twelve inches with drilled corn or four stalks every
3% feet if checked, produces silage corn of maximum yield and quality.
Farmers are coming to see that four stalks per hill checked gives
as many stalks per row as drilled corn with a stalk every nine to
twelve inches apart. If the four stalks in each hill were distributed
evenly on the 42 inches between hills in checked corn, each stalk would
be 10% inches apart. It will thus be seen that checking corn as
stated above gives as large a number of stalks per row as drilling
and in addition provides better grain and requires much less expense
of cultivation. A larger or smaller number of stalks per row than in-
dicated above is detrimental to the crop, hence planting corn of ques-
tionable germination will usually lead to a loss in the crop whether
it be planted at the proper rate or thicker to make up for kernels fail-
ing to germinate.
The result of using poor seed is illustrated in the work done by the
Department of Agronomy on the Demonstration Farms with seed corn
throughout Wisconsin the past two years. The yield of corn in Wis-
consin during these two years averaged not over 33 bushels per acre.
Why? Partly because, as these experiments proved, the average stand
was only 53% and the average germination of the seed corn through
which it was produced was only 66%. A further study of the results
shows that a good stand and germination was secured by those farmers
who carefully fire dried their corn. An ear of corn contains 800 ker-
nels. If, therefore, one ear used for seed fails to germinate, 800 ears
or eight bushels of corn and 800 stalks are lost in the crop. Silver
King corn dried by a farmer at Oshkosh under the eaves of a pump-
house yielded 44 bushels less per acre than the same variety kiln-dried.
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