Virginia’s David Hula Produces Record Corn Crop

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When the news first came out in December that the 2013 corn yield winner posted a certified yield of just shy of 455 bu/a, many thought it was a misprint, but David Hula, Renwood Farms, Charles City, VA is no stranger to large corn yields. Hula explains the record-breaking yield came from an old farm which formerly was home to livestock helped:

“It was a harvest yield of 454 bushels which tops our previous best of 420-something. A unique thing about this is that it was not captured at our traditional good spots. It was at another farm in another county so we just put in some irrigation there three years ago. Its an old plantation farm that had pigs, chickens and dairy. We were able to identify spots where they had continually put manure and then put irrigation on top of that. It allowed us to really push yields.”

A DuPont Pioneer corn hybrid is partially responsible, as well as a very dense population:

“We have had great success with the Pioneer 2088 YHR with a planting date of April 27. We had a plant population of 50,000 and a harvest population right at 48,000. So we had excellent emergence.”

Hula says that what they do at Renwood Farms isn’t hard, and could be easily duplicated:

“We were able to take some of the practices that we have done previously and put it on a different soil and it has the same yield effects. What we are doing could easily be duplicated by others.”

In regards to utilizing organic matter for soil health, Hula says that’s something they plan to continue:

“I think the manure has helped on the soil. But with the technologies that are out there today some of the biological products are allowing the soil, even without manure, to enrich itself. We are adding soil amenities to the soil and we are seeing similar effects and health improvement in the soil. We are doing a continuous no-till so we are trying to build organic matter that is something you just cant do easily unless you have manure or are adding the residue back to the soil without working it up. The soil additives we are using are part of our success.”

Tomorrow on Inside Agriculture we’ll hear more from Charles City, Virginia’s David Hula on nutrient management and other tools utilized to produce his record-breaking corn crop.


A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.

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