Posted 8/1/2007 11:38 (#181300 - in reply to #181283) Subject: Re: Midwest Striptill Expo
Thats the thing about strip tilling. It is a system that falls inbetween no till and conventional/mulch tilling.
It is not a system for every operation or all areas of the corn belt (or others for that matter).
You are far enough south and with maybe a tad lighter soil, no till may just be your best approach. I can see your concerns and area of importance for YOUR operation.
Just to compare areas, I'm about 200+ miles north of your location. I'm in the "belt" of the Minnesota River Valley system, not in the valley itself, but only 10 miles away. There is a narrow band (about 60 miles or so) that has the glacial deposits that are very heavy. The "end" of the glacier starts about 60 miles south give or take.
Our soils are very heavy. Normal lake ice out is around 4-15. Optimum planting date is 4-25 with about a 7 day window. Some "air" has to be incorporated into the seeding band to get the temps up to germination. Relying on natural drying/warm up, planting dates would be extended about 3 weeks doing no till. That in of itself would lead to a potential yield reduction of around 40 bu/acre. That would be making an 85 - 87 day corn the "normal". With a bit of tillage, 102 day corn can be planted with average being 97-100 day. Seed companies just don't have the work/race horse varieties in the low range of growing days.
So strip till is something of a "boost" up here in South Central MN. No till have been tried starting 15 yrs ago. The bottom financial line just can't compete with some tillage.... period. Tried, tested and trued by many many growers and even the U of MN.
I have no problem with using 28% as my N, haven't used NH3 for probably around 25 yrs "here". Not saying it isn't available or lower cost, because both those items ARE true. 28% is just a product that works very well for me. I can offset a bit of the cost factor in the ability to make a one pass application as I'm strip tilling IF I want to.
One thing I do know is that even with neighbors across the road, one system will work.... and on the other side.... it will be a complete failure. Just depends on the operation.