Many folks thought that April 15 was still too early to plant Corn in West Central MN, the soils were still cold. Yet, on April 15, 2016 when my family decided to start planting corn on our farm there were 3 reasons why I was OK with the decision. First, the soils were rapidly approaching 50 degrees at both 2″ and 4″ depths and the 7 day forecast was for warmer temperatures. Second was the soil conditions for planting were very good. Third, and most importantly was because I felt comfortable that we had good quality cold germ seed.
One of the biggest advantages that I feel we have in our relationship with Axis Seed is that I know our Cold Germs and/or Saturated Cold test scores. A Saturated Cold Germination test places the seed in a Saturated Soil environment for 7 days at 50 degrees. Then they warm it up to approx 72 degrees for 4 days to determine what will have viable plants.
I rarely pay much attention to the Warm Germ score (the one printed on the bag/tag) as it is not very indicative of the environment that the seed will be placed into. However, that is why I believe knowing our Cold/Saturated Cold scores is important. They are much more stressful and a better indication of what the seed will encounter when being planted into the soils of WC MN or the Red River Valley. If you would like to see the Cold Scores of your lot numbers just ask, with a little digging on our part we can provide them to you.