In The Country: What are your top priorities when buying seed?

What are your top priorities when buying seed? ( Farm Journal )

Adam York  Morgan County, Ill.

Adam York grows corn and soybeans on 10,000 acres, along with his brother, Nick, and uncle, Jeff. His focus is on nutrient density. “You can find a lot of good seed varieties and hybrids from pretty much any company, but what is missing is a focus on nutrient density. I look for that when I buy seed and it is so hard to find. If a plant has nutritional balance and the right minerals when growing, then it produces superior, nutritionally-sound seed. When that same seed gets planted, it’s so much better and has nutrient density and balance as it starts off and is able to get going and survive whatever Mother Nature throws at it.”

Rick Clark  Warren County, Ind.

Rick Clark grows alfalfa, corn, soybeans and wheat on 7,000 acres. Plant health ranks as the top concern in seed purchases. “No. 1 for me is always plant health because I don’t use fungicides, insecticides, seed treatments or chemicals. At No. 2, I need the best vigor available, even though I always plant late into covers. I also want to see more research on genetics that shows which plants thrive because of their mycorrhizal nature. Mycorrhizal fungi are critical for soil health, and we need traits that thrive in that environment.”

Chris Lively  Coahoma County, Miss.

Chris Lively grows 4,700 acres of corn, rice, soybeans, wheat and pecans. He chooses seed based on a treble of considerations. “Price is always a factor in buying seed, but my No. 1 factor in determining seed is plant characteristics and disease ratings. I also look at yield data in soil specific to the variety. I use all three of those categories to choose the best seed I need for the farm.”