farmerjo

Maize and Rotational Crops

740 posts in this topic

Welcome to the maize and rotational crop thread,

 

Here we will try to collect data,photo's and views of maize and rotational crop growers to help increase the knowledge of tv farmers.

 

There are so many things to talk about,soil preparation,seed variety,fertilizers,yields,spray applications,pests and diseases,rainfall,harvesting,prices and the list goes on.

 

We hope readers can gain as much out of this as those who already participate in the successful threads of farm photo's,rubber trees,pigs and cassava. 

 

To get the ball rolling we would like to start with a topic a week but of course if anyone has any questions maize related,fire away and someone will try to give some good advice back.

 

So this weeks topic will be Soil preparation.

 

There's a few different ways to prepare a field,

 

One way is to spray and go no-tillage,

Another is to plough the field with a 3 disc plough followed by either a seven disc plough or rotary tiller,this is tillage.

 

Below are pic's of a sprayed no-till field and a first pass 3 disc

 

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.  .

 

 

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ID: 2   Posted (edited)

C360_2015-04-21-18-11-41-441.jpgC360_2015-04-21-18-12-50-430.jpgC360_2015-04-21-18-14-01-452.jpgC360_2015-04-21-18-14-36-682.jpgSo a So So So a couple of important things we are looking for is an even bed to seed into and the big one,sub soil moisture.

 

Maize seed will be planted in an ideal world at 50mm deep so you must be sure you have moisture in the area to pack the soil around the seed.

 

Dry seeding can be done but unless you know rain is coming you take the chance to lose your seed and extra costs to reseed.

 

We had 38mm of rain this afternoon so i took out a thin spade and tape measure to check the moisture.

 

There are 2 photos from no-till ground and 2 from a piece i had ripped with a 3 disc plough in dry conditions then wiith my box scraper smoothed the surface.

 

Moisture levels you see are similar and its on pretty heavy soil,i will wait for the top to dry a little before having a crack at seeding tomorrow afternoon weather permitting.

 

Fors and against for the 2 are i think i run more chance of making wheel ruts in the plough land and it will have to be sprayed again.

 

Against the no-till i risk not having a even sub soil moisture across the field. 

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Edited by Ron19

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Funny you should start a thread on corn! The wife has 3 rai on a hillside I won't drive a tractor on and I am wondering about no till and hand planting Pacific seeds " Fancy Purple 111" which is a waxy variety.

On the crown of the hill are the BIL's rubber trees but the wifes land runs East to West so good sun despite the proximity of the rubber trees.

We would be dependent on the rain during the wet season as there is no dam or well.

The ground is rocky but still plenty of soil for planting.

Any advice before we commit to the project?

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Looking at that 3 disc ploughed land it will need a lot of water to break down those clods ,and that does look like heave soil,if any one then uses a 7 disc after that 3 disc ,then drill,then no rain I think you will lose the crop,the top 2-3 inches will dry out and the newly chitted seed will not have enough moisture,clods too big,to much air not enough soil compaction soil will dry out.

I have seen this type of seed bed round here the crop grows but germination is poor and it grows in to an uneven crop.

The problem with growing maize in Thailand ,no matter what the soil type it all gets the 3 then 7 disc treatment, on light land it will work ok crop will grow,no clods ,when drilled the seed bed will be even ,more moisture retention all will equal better germination.providing they is enough rain,light land drys out quick.

On heavy land the only way ( as I see it ) is to wait for more rain to knock the clods down ,a rotavetor will do it ,timing has to be right to wet and it will be like rotavating porridge,to dry no effect.Have seen a 7 disc on heavy landa bit to dry ,a job to see where he has been,no effect.

What you need is a Dutch Harrow,make one I did,a Cambridge /ring roller ,break the clods down and will retain a lot of moisture,(dream on).A flat roller would do have seen them in LOS.

One piece of land we grew maize on had not been worked for some years,and had a lot of grass weed we sprayed Atrazine and gromozon as a pre-emergence ,4 days after drilling,that did control a lot of the grass weeds.

Regs

KS

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we used to get corn in groung after last frost in spring which also coinsided with sufficent rain fall to get a good crop. when corn was about weist high (half way to picking, we would plant pumpkin and they would stand the dry weather , corn stocks provided shade, helping keep temp down. the pumpkin would ripen a couple 2 or 3 weeks behind corn (sweet) which had been harvested by hand earlier. to top off we would scatter turnip seed while harvesting pumpkin and they would be ready in the november/december.

think multi crops if you can work it out for your terrine, soil, rainfall. etc,

good luck

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kickstart. when we had clods as described we found timing after a rain using a tandom disk with what we called a chicken picker attached to back of disk. this broke clods up nicley, gave decent soil texture and soil condition for good consistint seed bed.

again the timing from rain to getting on land and working was critial, 2 or 3 days and the oppurnity could be missed sometimes you needed to work the ground twice to get that seed bed in the shape needed.

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Funny you should start a thread on corn! The wife has 3 rai on a hillside I won't drive a tractor on and I am wondering about no till and hand planting Pacific seeds " Fancy Purple 111" which is a waxy variety.

On the crown of the hill are the BIL's rubber trees but the wifes land runs East to West so good sun despite the proximity of the rubber trees.

We would be dependent on the rain during the wet season as there is no dam or well.

The ground is rocky but still plenty of soil for planting.

Any advice before we commit to the project?

Welcome Bsj,

Well i guess you know why i started this to show whether no-till or till is better in certain situations here in thailand as the no- till is certainly unproven.

Also to keep my mind at bay and harmony of the forum.There is a lot experienced maize farmers that have come and gone from here and hoping a few will contribute along the way.

Where do you farm? I could tell you waxy corn has a strong root and good stalk characteristics and high in nutrients,yits etc but you already know that.

To be honest i have no experience with hillside farming as mine is gently undulating country.There maybe someone who has hillside experience out there that can help.I would presume theres a rule of thumb for planting on slopes to stop erosion,also plant spacings would be closer or a cover crop between and good weed control.Not sure how you would keep your fertilzer there,maybe foliar applications.I tend to think here in issan 20 inches of rain is suitable for a crop..

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we used to get corn in groung after last frost in spring which also coinsided with sufficent rain fall to get a good crop. when corn was about weist high (half way to picking, we would plant pumpkin and they would stand the dry weather , corn stocks provided shade, helping keep temp down. the pumpkin would ripen a couple 2 or 3 weeks behind corn (sweet) which had been harvested by hand earlier. to top off we would scatter turnip seed while harvesting pumpkin and they would be ready in the november/december.

think multi crops if you can work it out for your terrine, soil, rainfall. etc,

good luck

Would the turnips be for sheep by any chance,or for humans,use to be a practice sowing turnips in autum stuble fields, for sheep over winter.

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we went to low till and it does require different implements. we used a stubble mulcher using sweeps instead of spikes on the shanks. the sweeps were various widths some as wide as 4 foot they ran shallow to kill weeds,etc and could be rigged to apply gas (ammonia) etc. fertilizer.

we had several dry years that the ground was worked after volunteer seed sprouted after harvest.. ground was worked one more time for weed control and then planted back to our small grain crop of choice.

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we used to get corn in groung after last frost in spring which also coinsided with sufficent rain fall to get a good crop. when corn was about weist high (half way to picking, we would plant pumpkin and they would stand the dry weather , corn stocks provided shade, helping keep temp down. the pumpkin would ripen a couple 2 or 3 weeks behind corn (sweet) which had been harvested by hand earlier. to top off we would scatter turnip seed while harvesting pumpkin and they would be ready in the november/december.

think multi crops if you can work it out for your terrine, soil, rainfall. etc,

good luck

Would the turnips be for sheep by any chance,or for humans,use to be a practice sowing turnips in autum stuble fields, for sheep over winter.

Welcome KS and Slapout,

In a lot of research i've done for no-till they use the radish or turnips because of their deep roots to pentrate the hard pan and allow the following crops roots to get down.And its all part of soil preparation .

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turnips were served at our dinner table just like beans peas, etc. we planted a variety called purple top. quite tastey creamed . horses will paw turnips out of the ground pigs root them out, no experience with sheep and turnips. , we mixed seed in bottom of wheat drill to go around the field 1 or 2 times just so we would know where to look when harvest time arrived.

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C360_2015-04-22-10-39-59-197.jpgC360_2015-04-22-10-39-24-677.jpgWell the

 

Gods are smiling,got 38mm rain yesterday

 

So a bit premature i thought i would start seeding this morning knowing the weather forecast is predicting more rain this week.

 

Ended up getting about 30 rai in for the day.

 

Seeding is a 2 man operation here,me on tractor and fil bringing seed and fertilizer to me.

 

More about seed variety and rates later

 

Couple of pics,my gofa vehicle and first few rows seeded. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On a sad note we wish Wayned,a fellow maize farmer,deepest sympathy for the loss of his wife last month.

I do know he's looking forward to the first of may to start getting his maize in.

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Funny you should start a thread on corn! The wife has 3 rai on a hillside I won't drive a tractor on and I am wondering about no till and hand planting Pacific seeds " Fancy Purple 111" which is a waxy variety.

On the crown of the hill are the BIL's rubber trees but the wifes land runs East to West so good sun despite the proximity of the rubber trees.

We would be dependent on the rain during the wet season as there is no dam or well.

The ground is rocky but still plenty of soil for planting.

Any advice before we commit to the project?

Welcome Bsj,

Well i guess you know why i started this to show whether no-till or till is better in certain situations here in thailand as the no- till is certainly unproven.

Also to keep my mind at bay and harmony of the forum.There is a lot experienced maize farmers that have come and gone from here and hoping a few will contribute along the way.

Where do you farm? I could tell you waxy corn has a strong root and good stalk characteristics and high in nutrients,yits etc but you already know that.

To be honest i have no experience with hillside farming as mine is gently undulating country.There maybe someone who has hillside experience out there that can help.I would presume theres a rule of thumb for planting on slopes to stop erosion,also plant spacings would be closer or a cover crop between and good weed control.Not sure how you would keep your fertilzer there,maybe foliar applications.I tend to think here in issan 20 inches of rain is suitable for a crop..

Bsj,

What are the advantages you see growing waxy corn.

Conditions,yield,price.?

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kickstart. when we had clods as described we found timing after a rain using a tandom disk with what we called a chicken picker attached to back of disk. this broke clods up nicley, gave decent soil texture and soil condition for good consistint seed bed.

again the timing from rain to getting on land and working was critial, 2 or 3 days and the oppurnity could be missed sometimes you needed to work the ground twice to get that seed bed in the shape needed.

I aggee with you timing is all important,how many times have we had some rain some times a lot ,and at 07.00 hours the following morning do you see a Thai out planting his corn in the aformentioned porridge,sometimes I can understand it if he thinks no more rain for a week? a lost opportunity ,but blocked drill coulters, seed sown at uneven depth,not a good start for a crop.

I think I know your Chicken picker, what we would call crumbler bar,fitted on the back of harrow ,make a good job.

But as I have said all you have over here is a 3and 7 disc ploughs,guy near me had a 6610 plough his land ,had some rain then he used his 25 hp Hino and 5 disc plough and did he make a good job ,lettuce seed would have grown ,let alone maize.

He is only a small percentege who got it right ,I do not like the 7 disc plough got to be used at the right time ,some times 2 passes are needed, but never got.

A furrow press would work over here, plough ,press ,and drill,or a simpal dutch harrow with a crumbler bar on the back,would work ,land has to be clean, instead of the 7 disc.

Saying all this direct drilling has to be the way ,now nearly all new drills have disc's fitted,and not coulters ,you are half way there,the above guy directed drilled his second maize crop last year, and it did wll ,he went on to sell the hole field 20 rie ish to guy who made it in to maize silage,thought he could make more money than harvesting the crop.

KS

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