Monsanto's DeKalb Genetics Corp. plans to introduce 21 new corn hybrids for 2002. The company says the new varieties will feature traits and technologies that may increase grower profitability.

“DeKalb is currently investing more research dollars into every kernel than any other corn company,” says Dale Sorensen, Monsanto branded corn technical manager. “The scientific expertise and research facilities of DeKalb Genetics and Monsanto — combined and integrated — are unparalleled.”

New corn hybrids feature innovations such as improved dry-down, YieldGard Corn Borer trait for season-long insect protection, Roundup Ready herbicide tolerance, and YieldGard Corn Borer with Roundup Ready corn.

Integrated efforts

At DeKalb, researchers working on genetic traits and corn breeders working on the latest germplasm are integrating their efforts. As a result, Sorensen explains, the company can incorporate new traits into elite germplasm very quickly.

“DeKalb develops new hybrids at an unprecedented rate. We're running 1.2 million two-row, 23-foot-long yield trial plots at any given time, testing 85,000 hybrids at 255 sites across the country. We run nearly 700 farmer/cooperator strip trials, one of the nation's most extensive company-run testing programs, to insure that our products are locally proven.”

“When we look at developing hybrids, we make decisions based on the needs of growers in very specific geographies,” Sorensen adds. “At DeKalb, we're focused not on introducing more hybrids — but on introducing better hybrids, featuring bigger yield improvements and traits that provide value to the grower.”

DeKalb hybrids with improved dry-down can provide growers significant reductions in drying costs. With high-energy costs, Sorensen points out; such hybrids can mean significant savings to growers.

Six additional DeKalb hybrids have obtained Residue Proven status for high performance in reduced-tillage (DKC42-22 YG, DKC44-42 YG, DKC44-46, DKC53, 32 YG, DKC 53-34 and DKC 58-52 YG). Eleven Roundup Ready corn hybrids have now earned the Residue Proven arrow, meeting stringent criteria for high yields, strong emergence and seedling growth. These elite hybrids also feature a complete disease package, including resistance to Gray leaf spot, Northern and Southern corn leaf blight, Eyespot and Anthracnose leaf blight and stalk rot.

New 2002 Dekalb Hybrids

DKC32-59 (RR) — Roundup Ready, Residue Proven, 82-day maturity, very good emergence, seedling growth and resistance to anthracnose leaf blight.

DKC33-08 — 83-day maturity, very good test weight and root strength, and resistance to anthracnose leaf blight.

DKC35-50 (RR) — Roundup Ready, 85-day maturity, excellent seedling growth, very good dry-down, emergence and root strength.

DKC37-81 (RR) — Roundup Ready, 87-day maturity, very good seedling growth and test weight, tall plant height.

DKC44-46 (YG/RR) — YieldGard Corn Borer/Roundup Ready, Residue Proven, 94-day maturity, excellent root strength, very good emergence, NCLB R1, seedling growth and drought tolerance.

DKC48-15 — 98-day maturity, very good seedling growth, NCLB R2, SCLB, resistance to anthracnose leaf blight and resistance to first brood European corn borer.

DKC50-73 (YG/RR) — YieldGard Corn Borer/Roundup Ready, 101-day maturity, excellent root strength, very good test weight.

DKC51-88 — 101-day maturity, very good seedling growth, root strength, resistance to anthracnose leaf blight and resistance to Goss' Wilt.

DKC53-34 (YG/RR) — YieldGard Corn Borer/Roundup Ready, Residue Proven, 103-day maturity, very good emergence and stalk strength.

DKC55-51 (YG/RR) — YieldGard Corn Borer/Roundup Ready, 105-day maturity, very good emergence and seedling growth.

DKC57-01 — 107-day maturity, very good emergence, good seedling growth, root strength, drought tolerance and dry-down.

DKC58-78 (YG) — YieldGard Corn Borer, 108-day maturity, very good emergence, stay green and resistance to anthracnose leaf blight.

DKC60-08 (YG) — YieldGard Corn Borer, 110-day maturity, very good test weight and resistance to anthracnose leaf blight.

DKC60-15 — 110-day maturity, very good emergence and seedling growth, good dry-down.

DKC60-17 (RR) — Roundup Ready, 110-day maturity, very good emergence and seedling growth.

DKC61-25 (YG) — YieldGard corn Borer, 111-day maturity, very good root strength and resistance to Southern rust.

DKC63-03 — 113-day maturity, very good stay green, harvest appearance, NCLB R1 and resistance to Southern rust.

DKC64-10 (RR) — Roundup Ready, 114-day maturity, very good resistance to Southern rust, good emergence, seedling growth and dry-down.

DKC66-50 — 116-day maturity, very good root strength, stay green, NCLB R1 and resistance to common rust.

DK687RR — Roundup Ready, 118-day maturity, very good stalk strength, NCLB R1, good resistance to anthracnose leaf blight and Stewart's leaf blight.

DKC69-70 (YG) — YieldGard Corn Borer, 119-day maturity, excellent test weight, very good emergence, root strength and stalk strength.