Ohio State University Extension Bulletin

Agronomic Crops Team On-Farm Research Projects 1998

Special Circular 166-99

Narrow-Row Corn Evaluation

Steve Ruhl, Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent
Tom Weiler, Morrow County Producer
Ed Lentz, Extension Agronomy Specialist


Narrow-row corn may increase yields due to spreading the plants out to take better advantage of sunlight, moisture, and soil fertility. The objective of this study was to examine yield differences between 15- and 30-inch rows.

Nearest Town:ChestervilleHerbicide Program: 
Drainage:SystematicPRE:Bicep II - 3 qt./acre
Tillage:Fall chisel, field cultivationPOST (6/18):Accent - 2/3 oz./acre
Previous Crop: SoybeansMSO - 1 gal./100 gallon
Soil Test:pH 7.0 spray
P 23 ppmPOST (6/25):Banvel - 4 oz./acre
K 154 ppm Spirit - 1 oz./acre
Fertilizer:Pre-plant - 180 # NH3 Nitrogen, Crop Oil - 1 qt./acre
200# 0-0-60, 12 gallon of 10-34-028% N - 1/2 gal./acre
Variety:Pioneer 33G26Herbicide Costs (excluding $4/acre spray costs):
Planting Date: May 6PRE: $28.50/acre
Harvest Date:October 15POST (6/18):$25.50/acre
 POST (6/25):$16.84/acre


The corn was planted with a six-row Kinze planter equipped for 15-inch rows. Treatments were replicated four times in a complete block design. Strip plots were planted in alternating 12-row plots containing 15- and 30-inch rows; therefore, treatments were not randomized within blocks. Individual strip plots were 30 feet wide and 453 feet long.

15-inch36,20030,500 a20.7 a154.3 a
30-inch36,00029,750 a20.7 a165.5 b
Treatment means followed by the same letter are not significantly different from each other at P = 0.05. LSD for yield equals 7.4 bu/acre. CV = 2.1%

Summary and Notes

Pioneer 33G26 yielded significantly less in 15-inch row widths than in conventional width spacing. The field used for this study has an organic matter of approximately 12 percent. The weed pressure is severe especially for giant foxtail and giant ragweed. We sprayed three times and both post treatments (applied late) injured the corn. The brace roots were injured with the Banvel/Spirit combination. Accent injury was evident in the corn ears. If we conduct a similar plot next year, we will plant around 32,000 seeds in the 30-inch rows and 42,000 to 45,000 in the 15-inch rows. We will also try to be more timely with herbicide applications.

For additional information, contact:
Steve Ruhl
Ohio State University Extension, Morrow County
871 W. Marion Rd., Suite 102
Mt. Gilead, OH 43338

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