How Variable-Rate Seeding Can Increase Your Yield

by Susan Macisaac, Discovery Science Lead, The Climate Corporation

March 6, 2018

Variable Rate Seeding Screen Capture

I love being part of the Climate science team because I get to work to solve problems that directly impact farmers. For those of us who work on seed scripting, this is a really exciting time of year. It’s a chance to see how our science and FieldView™ products help farmers make one of their most important management decisions – what seeding rate to plant in their fields.

Listen to "The Advantages of Advanced Seed Scripting" Podcast with Susan MacIsaac

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Addressing Optimal Seed Density And Field Variability

Determining the optimal seeding density for your field is not an easy task, and field variability can make this an even tougher decision. That’s why knowing the optimal seeding rate for the highest yielding and lowest yielding areas of your fields can have a direct impact on your bottom line. Since few tools are currently available to help you make this decision, we saw an opportunity to help you manage field variability and have every opportunity to maximize yield.

Last year, farmers using our advanced seed scripting solution saw an average increase of 5 bu/ac compared to those who wrote their own scripts!*

Variable-Rate Seeding: Improving Yield Opportunity By Addressing Field Variability

Our advanced seed scripting solution helps you create variable-rate seeding prescriptions that are customized for specific areas of your fields, and:

  • Uses your historical data and yield maps and models developed by data scientists to consistently identify high and low productivity areas, creating reliable management zones.
  • Is backed by proprietary field testing results, consisting of multi-year, multi-location field trials that allow you to create scripts for any seed brand in the industry.
  • Combines field variability with knowledge of optimal seeding rates for commercial hybrids to provide you with a seeding rate prescription by zone for your field.
  • New for 2018, in certain regions, you no longer need two years of historical data to use this tool. You now have the flexibility to use satellite imagery to create your variable-rate seed prescriptions. However, if you have both your historical yield data and satellite imagery, this is the most accurate way to identify field management zones and create the best prescriptions tailored to your goals.

The Advantages Of Variable-Rate Planting

Advanced scripting (variable-rate seeding) can offer you substantial benefits, including:

  • Yield advantage: Last year, farmers using our advanced seed scripting solution saw an average increase of 5 bu/ac compared to those who wrote their own scripts!
  • Time advantage: Typically, creating a customized variable-rate seed prescription can take farmers or their agronomic partners anywhere from more than a day to more than a week, but with FieldView, the average time to create a script is 7-8 minutes.
  • Manage your field variability, soil variability and management zones, utilize field testing data from the industry's most robust genetic library, and leverage automation to create scripts in seconds.
  • Increase your efficiency and save time during planning, while still allowing customization for each script for a clear value at harvest.
  • Execute your variable-rate prescriptions on compatible equipment of your choice.

With FieldView and advanced seed scripting, you can assess field variability, and visualize and analyze crop performance to get the most out of every acre. Good luck as you prepare for the coming planting season and beyond. To purchase, or if you have any questions, feel free to contact your Climate dealer, or the Climate Support Team at (888) 924-7475 or

author portrait

Susan Macisaac is a discovery scientist focused on developing new digital solutions for farmers. Through designed field research and data science, Susan is driving new scientific insights that impact environmental and management practices on product performance. Previously, Susan worked at Monsanto as a research and development specialist.

Comparing 281,000 ac in 4,179 fields
More than 25% of field had script
Products maturity ranges between 95-115 range
Limiting comparisons to the same county; represents 79 counties 10 Midwest states
Minimum of 3 Advanced & DIY Seed scripts in a county to be compared