News Briefs November 11, 2019


News You Can Use

Pioneer knows the value of persistence. Research teams are hard at work, always looking for innovative products to bring to the market.

This week’s briefs cover managing SCN with Peking, 2020 alfalfa planning and corn harvest timing.

Want to speak with an expert on these or other topics? Contact Kacey Birchmier at

Crop Insights

Managing SCN with Peking Resistance

Again this year, Peking is proving to be a reliable source of soybean cyst nematode resistance. While the majority of varieties have the 88788 SCN trait, nematodes appear to be adapting and developing resistance. Peking varieties are rising to the top as SCN adapts to other forms of resistance. SCN populations have been increasing, according to a study…Hear more

2020 Alfalfa Planning – Soil Sampling

Alfalfa is a pH-sensitive crop, doing best in the 6.8 to 7.0 range. That means soil sampling is critical to success. Sampling should be done every two to four years at about the same date, when crops are not growing. Knowing the soil pH levels makes nutrient management easier in the coming seasons…Hear more

Corn Harvest Timing

Natural drydown may have all but stopped in November. Some corn still has moisture levels above 30%, which presents a problem for harvest. Weakened stalks can be an issue with late harvests, and this season a host of factors have increased the risk of lodging. Because of these stalk issues, it’s important to evaluate fields to determine which to harvest first, despite moisture levels…Hear more

In the News

Corteva Agriscience Researchers Spotlight “Master Switch” Gene in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Scientists have long successfully employed single gene editing to add useful crop characteristics, such as insect control or herbicide resistance. However, locating a single gene to increase yield has proven elusive.

Despite this, researchers at Corteva Agriscience began looking at genes that function like master switches for growth and yield. They picked MADS-box genes, a group common in many plants, before settling on one (zmm28) to alter in corn plants. The challenge of working with genes that regulate development is making sure they turn on the right amount at the right time and in the right type of tissues.

“It’s awfully easy to get messed up plants,” if the genes are too active, said Jeff Habben, Plant Pathologist, Corteva Agriscience, who helped lead the research.

In field tests across U.S. corn-growing regions between 2014 and 2017, researchers found that the genetically modified hybrids typically yielded 3% to 5% more grain than control plants. Some yielded as much as 10%, researchers reported in the scientific journal “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.”…Read more

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