Alpha, Illinois, USA


ag Research

decades spent Using the Scientific Method

and reThe History of Calmer Agronomic Research Center

After borrowing $500 from the bank and $500 from his grandma at the age of 18, Marion Calmer started a farming operation to call his own raising hogs and growing corn and soybeans. The financial difficulties of the 1980s forced Calmer to find more efficient and profitable ways of farming in order to stay in business. In 1985, Marion founded Calmer Independent Agronomic Research Center to find answers to profitability-related questions impacting his bottom line.

According to Marion, “I like my seed and fertilizer salespeople, but of course they’re going to recommend I plant a higher population or increase my application rates. Those recommendations may lead to a slight yield bump, but did the jump in yield pay for the additional expenses? Lord Kelvin said ‘you can’t improve what you don’t measure or research,’ which shows why it’s so important to do your own research. Of course, studies funded by seed or fertilizer companies have the potential of showing a favorable response to their product(s). I don’t accept any outside money for research so that I can get unbiased data, utilize that data to be a more profitable farmer and then share my knowledge to help other farmers become more profitable and better stewards of America’s land and waterways.

On this page, you will see the results from several of my longest running and most popular studies such as fertilizer applications, population rates and various row spacings for corn and soybeans. Please call my cell at (309) 368-1182 with any questions.”

2020 On-Farm Research

“Thank you for your interest in my on-farm research. Just 1 year of research is enough to get you thinking about your farming process, so imagine how much I’ve learned and the changes I’ve made throughout the years! The information in this research book is the data I’ve found to be true at my farm in western Illinois. I strongly encourage you to do your own on-farm research to better understand ways to maximize your farm’s potential profits.”

Download 2021 Research Document:

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Click any of the links below to access the full list of videos and combine tips! 

Tune up & Diagnose


Refine & Improve