New Planting Methods

September 2, 2022

We had an interesting discovery the last few weeks with planting a very late crop of Forage Sorghum on Aug 20.  We are hoping to chop it for silage around Oct 10 and planted ryegrass with it for winter & spring growing.  But the interesting discovery was that the FS germinated quicker and nearly every seed came up in 7 days when we used our corn planter instead of our wheat/ryegrass drill to plant.  The corn planter does a better job of making a tight slit in the soil and placing the seed in the narrow opening. It then has press wheels that close back the slit.  The result is a seed placed in nearly undisturbed soil that is tightly pressed against the seed.  A drill disturbs more soil and the soil becomes loose and doesn’t get as good of soil to seed contact.  We have struggled the last two years to get better than 50-70% of the FS seeds to germinate.  So we bought new plates to turn our corn planter into a small seed planter that puts a seed down every 2.5” in rows that are 15” apart.  The picture below shows the results, rapid emergence and I would guess 90% or better germination.

Now thinking how we can use this in sowing sorghum in our summer pastures and possibly some millet as well, but I’ll leave that for another week.  Love to do experiments and even better when they work!

David Fischer

Forage Sorghum

Aug 26th, 2022

Wetland Grasses

Aug 19th, 2022

Sustainability Tour

Aug 12th, 2022