Pioneer EnClass® Soils for Better Farming

Rationale and Objective

  • Soil water level (both deficit and excess) is an important factor in crop productivity.
  • Hybrids and varieties differ in their tolerance to high or low water availability and drainage.
  • Pioneer EnClass® Soils, a proprietary DuPont Pioneer system, was developed to group the many soil map units into categories based upon soil water availability.
  • The objective of this research was to examine how hybrids responded to plant population in 2012 in soils with different water availability characteristics as classified using Pioneer EnClass Soils.

Study Description

Plot Layout:      Field-length strips
Population: 30,000, 34,000, 38,000 and 42,000 plants/acre
Locations: 288 locations in IA and MO
Hybrids: 4 per location, 48 total 
  • Yield monitor data from these plots were analyzed in FIT® Studio to remove common sources of yield monitor error.


  • Across all 288 locations, hybrid yield response varied substantially among Pioneer EnClass Soils categories.
  • Due to extended drought conditions, soils classified as Potentially Wet were often higher yielding than Well Drained or Wet/Dry soils. In years with normal rainfall, Well Drained soils are expected to be higher yielding (Figures 1-3 below).
  • Hybrid yield responses to population often varied dramatically among Pioneer EnClass Soils categories.
Chart: Response of Pioneer® brand hybrid P115HR (RX1,LL,RR2)
Chart: Response of Pioneer® brand hybrid P1324HR(RX1,LL,RR2)
Chart: Response of Pioneer® brand hybrid P0062AM(TM)(AM1,LL,RR2)

Management Suggestions

  • Based on a single year of testing, Pioneer EnClass Soils categories showed promise as a basis for improved variable-rate seeding, as well as variable-rate nitrogen applications.
  • Pioneer research using the Pioneer EnClass Soils system is ongoing; consider testing this approach on your farm in 2013.

Pioneer EnClass® Soils Descriptions

  • Well Drained - Soils with moderate to high water availability and sufficient internal drainage, such as productive loams. Won't burn up or drown out under typical conditions.
  • Potentially Dry – Soils with reduced water availability and/or excessive drainage. Typically drought prone. Sands and sandy loams are examples.
  • Potentially Wet – Soils with high water availability, poor drainage. Potential for excess water during growing season. Often low lying with little slope. Silty clay loams and clay loams may be found in these sometimes-ponded areas.
  • Wet/Dry – Soils that can be wet early in the season due to poor internal drainage but have reduced water holding capacity and can dry out later. Some have reduced soil depth and low percolation rates. Droughty clays and clay-pan shallow soils are examples.
Field map

Field map showing NRCS soil map units.

Field map

Field map with soil map units categorized by water availability characteristics using Pioneer EnClass® Soils.

PIONEER® brand products are provided subject to the terms and conditions of purchase which are part of the labeling and purchase documents.  2012 data are based on average of all comparisons made in 288 locations through Dec 5, 2012. Multi-year and multi-location is a better predictor of future performance. Do not use these or any other data from a limited number of trials as a significant factor in product selection. Product responses are variable and subject to a variety of environmental, disease, and pest pressures.  Individual results may vary.

Related Content

Back to Corn Trials
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   AM1 - Optimum® AcreMax® 1 Insect Protection System with an integrated corn rootworm refuge solution includes HXX, LL, RR2. Optimum AcreMax 1 products contain the LibertyLink® gene and can be sprayed with Liberty® herbicide. The required corn borer refuge can be planted up to half a mile away.
Product performance in water-limited environments is variable and depends on many factors such as the severity and timing of moisture deficiency, heat stress, soil type, management practices and environmental stress, as well as disease and pest pressures. All hybrids may exhibit reduced yield under water and heat stress. Individual results may vary.
  HX1 – Contains the Herculex® I Insect Protection gene which provides protection against European corn borer, southwestern corn borer, black cutworm, fall armyworm, lesser corn stalk borer, southern corn stalk borer, and sugarcane borer; and suppresses corn earworm.
HXX – Herculex® XTRA contains both the Herculex I and Herculex RW genes.
Herculex® Insect Protection technology by Dow AgroSciences and Pioneer Hi-Bred. Herculex® and the HX logo are registered trademarks of Dow AgroSciences LLC.
  LL - Contains the LibertyLink® gene for resistance to Liberty® herbicide.
Liberty®, LibertyLink® and the Water Droplet Design are trademarks of Bayer.
  RR2 - Contains the Roundup Ready® Corn 2 trait that provides safety for over-the-top applications of labeled glyphosate herbicides when applied to label directions.
Roundup Ready® is a registered trademark used under license from Monsanto Company.