“We clearly saw some yield benefits of the drought-tolerant hybrids at reduced irrigation levels as the drought-tolerant hybrids really did well exerting silks, even during very harsh conditions – dry and hot – at the same time tassels were shedding pollen.”
Xue said he has not conducted any economic analysis for these trials.
“It will be up to the producer to determine if he can ever afford a 100-bushel-per-acre corn yield level or not,” he said. “But certainly, if we are talking about limited irrigation in the future, drought-tolerant corn may fit into producers’ choices.”
Xue said in terms of irrigation water savings, 75 percent evapotranspiration may be the most attractive because the yield only dropped about 15 percent, but irrigation water was reduced by 25 percent or 6 inches of water savings.