We are working to establish a maize breeding and varietal development program that addresses the concerns of organic farmers. In our current research project, we focus our activities on:

  1. Evaluating the phenotypic response of maize hybrids above and below ground to varying soil nitrogen and weed pressure levels.
  2. Examining the relationship between root characteristics and agronomic performance of maize hybrids.
  3. Comparing the root structure of maize hybrids developed for conventional high input systems to those selected for organically managed environments.
  4. Comparing the yield response of maize hybrids in controlled organic experiments to their performance in on-farm strip trials within a variety-testing network.