Selecting the right variety can make a huge difference in crop production. How do we know which ones to choose? In this new video Area Agent, Tim Hambrick, shares his steps on using NC State University’s Official Variety Test data to choose varieties that will work best on your farm.
To get a good baseline, line up the 3-year averages alongside the current year numbers. If a variety lands in more than one column, that is a variety that bears a little more exploring. This may lead to a long list but we recommend limiting your list to the top 10 yielders at each location.
Look for common varieties that are in the top 10 in:
- Statewide data
- In multiple years
- At the location most similar to your farm
Once you have a list of 5-10 varieties that have been the highest yielders across those categories look more into traits that will benefit you specifically. In some areas that may be pest resistance, in others it may be flowering time or test weight.
The key is to find varieties that will likely perform the best in your area on a consistent, year-to-year basis and will meet the demands of your customer.