Pioneer Corn Hybrids Perform Well in Eastern NC

Darren Armstrong, along with his brother, farm corn and soybeans behind wheat in Tyrrell County North Carolina. This year they planted four varieties of Pioneer Hybrid Corn and Armstrong explains that one of those four was a drought tolerant variety, but this wasn’t exactly the year to put it to the test:

“We’ve had an excessive amount of rain and better drained areas of our farm. We had tropical storm Beryl come up the coast and drop six inches of rain on us, when the corn needed some dry weather.”

Armstrong explains that in the Blacklands, unlike producers in the Piedmont, they have water issues in reverse, too much:

“All of our land is under pump, we pump our water off of it. We take away water. We have been working to try to drain some using underground methods and we saw some yield advantages out of that.”

Armstrong says that while he is pleased overall with his Pioneer Corn Hybrids he would like to see one aspect of the plant structure worked on:

“Some of the varieties in the past we have had some ear damage problems. Though this year we didn’t see any of that, even though it was wet and humid. The change I would like to see is them mixing up some of the varieties to make the ear placement lower. Also to see some of the plants stay shorter, closer to the ground.”

Armstrong explains his reasoning for a shorter corn plant:

“We have a lot of wind here being close to the coast. I know a lot of times the stalk and ear height don’t have a lot to do with the lodging of a plant but its logical that the closer the plant’s ear is to the ground, there is less leverage on the root system when the wind is blowing against it.”

Armstrong has grown one Pioneer soybean variety this year and its one of the better bean fields on his farm:

“The only DuPont Pioneer varieties that we planted this time was the 95Y40 soybean. It’s one of the best looking beans that we planted this year. The early growth and leaf area shaded the ground quickly, and the quicker you can shade it out, the better control over weeds you will have.”

Regarding his wheat variety selections, Armstrong says Pioneer varieties could merit a closer look:

“I’m pleased with most everything. I don’t grow their wheat but maybe that will be something I look at in the future.”

For more in the field reports from Pioneer, click the ad on the home page or click here. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.