Field Insights

Seasons Vary but Growers Remain Steadfast

Combining more than 60 years’ worth of knowledge, two corn growers share their agricultural expertise.

When you’re a grower, you know challenges are a part of life — especially when you’ve been in the profession for decades. From drought-stricken seasons to uncertain economic times, two row crop growers from different regions of the country have seen it all.

Davie Stephens from Clinton, Kentucky grows corn and soybeans in Western Kentucky and Northwest Tennessee. He graduated college from the University of Kentucky with a degree in agricultural economics. After graduation, he returned to Western Kentucky where he purchased his first farm and learned firsthand how to succeed as a grower. Thirty-five years later, he makes passing along his knowledge to others a top priority.


I started with Trivapro the year it came out, and I’ve used it every year on every acre since. You get better plant health; and yield-wise, you can always see a 10-to-15-bushel-per-acre bump on corn.

Arlis Eitzmann Seed Manager at Aurora Co-op and Nebraska Grower

“I have always enjoyed getting involved with the community, whether I’m serving on the fair board or talking with young farmers,” says Stephens, who is also a member of the Kentucky Soybean Association and the American Soybean Association. “That’s something that has been important to me in my career — having conversations with different farmers on how to move agriculture forward for future generations.”

Nebraska native Arlis Eitzmann shares Stephens’ lifelong passion for agriculture. Currently living and working in Byron as a seed manager for Aurora Co-op, Eitzmann also grows corn on his own farm. Even before he started his profession as a seed salesman and raised hogs in the 1980s, farming was in his blood.

“I like to see things grow and watch the seed work, knowing that I have made the right recommendations for my customers’ crops and my own,” says Eitzmann. “It’s a pretty good life.”

A Seasoned Staple

As experienced growers, both Stephens and Eitzmann are constantly looking for innovative ways to improve their operations. But once they find a product that performs well, they’re hooked. Trivapro® corn fungicide is one of those products. Since its launch in 2016, Trivapro has helped safeguard growers’ yield potential and plant health from disease and stressful environmental conditions.

“I started with Trivapro the year it came out, and I’ve used it every year on every acre since,” says Eitzmann. “You get better plant health; and yield-wise, you can always see a 10-to-15-bushel-per-acre bump on corn.”

As a Syngenta Cleaner & Greener fungicide, Trivapro contains SOLATENOL®  technology. In addition to offering powerful disease control, this unique active ingredient boosts plant health by helping improve light absorption, water conservation and harvest efficiency for even greater potential yield gain and return on investment. Even in drought-ridden seasons like this one, Trivapro has become a necessary investment for these two growers to help protect yield potential.

“We experienced a drought in 2022, and we decided to do a test of Trivapro to monitor how healthy it kept the plants,” says Stephens. “The stalk health really caught my eye more than anything, and when the guys were in the combine harvesting those fields, they were really impressed with the way they yielded.”

In fact, years of data show that Trivapro works harder and lasts longer to help growers yield stronger with reliable results. In both wet and dry conditions, Trivapro delivers an average yield increase of 17.2 bushels per acre (bu/A) in wet seasons and 14.1 bu/A in drought over an untreated check.1 This consistency of high performance is what won over Stephens.

“Trivapro is just a great chemistry,” says Stephens. “It’s nice to go to bed at night, knowing you’ve got that longevity and that Trivapro is doing its due diligence.”

Moving Farming Forward

With decades of combined experience behind them and more seasons on the horizon, Stephens and Eitzmann have a lot to give to the next generation of growers, but acknowledge they still benefit from a steady stream of know-how and support from their fellow farmers — especially during challenging times.

“I always tell younger farmers to hang on and things will get better,” says Eitzmann.

Stephens agrees and counsels his less experienced counterparts to “take advice from people who have gone through different things, whether it’s something with the crop, droughts or high interest rates. The farm doesn’t exist without good community involvement — farmers helping farmers.”

1Syngenta on-farm, large strip trials. 2020 trial locations: IA (2), IL (33), IN (6), NE (6), OH (13), WI (11) and SD (26). 2021 trial locations: IL (35), IN (9), WI (7) and SD (13).

  • Community involvement builds relationships with fellow farmers.
  • Growers should find a mentor to provide steady support during the tough times.
  • Invest in crop protection to protect yield potential.