Phosphorus (P) fertilizer is often added to cropping systems to increase yield, but growers should not overlook the importance of micronutrients like Zinc (Zn). Understanding some of the nutrient interactions that affect nutrient availability can help with management decisions like fertilizer source.
Quantify the increase of phosphorus (P) uptake with MicroEssentials® S10® (12-40-0-10S) applied to corn compared to DAP (18-46-0) and DAP-based blends that supply the same rate of nitrogen (N), P and sulfur (S).
Are you seed-placing your phosphorus (P) and basing application rates on seed safety rather than crop requirements? You may be leaving yield on the table. Recent research out of the University of Manitoba examining seed-safe rates of P and sulfur (S) in canola is showing that P applied at rates based on seed safety may not be adequate to maximize canola yields.
Phosphorus is one of the three macronutrients essential for plant growth. It is required for the photosynthesis process, converting the sun's energy into food for the plant. It is also required for strong root development. A plant must be able to access phosphorus to ensure a healthy growing cycle.
Evaluate the yield response and phosphorus uptake of MicroEssentials® SZ®
There’s certainly a value to working proactively to avoid stresses before they’re apparent, especially when it comes to soil fertility. Perhaps, as you make plans for the 2014 season, it’s time to take into account your experience from past seasons to create a crop nutrition plan that can tackle fertility issues before they make their yield-robbing presence apparent.
Raising a productive crop depends greatly on the nutrients a plant is able to access during its life cycle. Many factors influence the availability of those nutrients, including soil pH. For instance, as soil pH increases, the availability of phosphorus (P), zinc (Zn) and iron (Fe) decreases. Although variety selection can help manage iron deficiency in soybeans, fertilizer application is still needed to address the P and Zn deficiencies prevalent in high-pH soils.
Australian researchers recently studied the reaction of both liquid and granular phosphorus (P) fertilizers in soil that was either dry or wet (at field capacity). They measured the movement of P from the application site as well as the amount of P that was in available and non-available forms.
Single superphosphate (SSP) was the first commercial mineral fertilizer, and it led to the development of the modern plant nutrient industry. This material was once the most commonly used fertilizer, but other phosphorus (P) fertilizers have largely replaced SSP because of its relatively low P content.
Zinc (Zn) has been put to work on farms for decades. Fencing wire and nails are galvanized with zinc to prevent rust. Metal buckets are coated with Zn to last longer. However, Zn’s most important job is in the field, as one of the 16 essential elements in plant growth.
Soil testing is one of the most important management practices for crop production in the new millennium. It is certain to be listed among the best management practices recommended by industry and university agronomists, consultants, and farm managers for the benefit of their farmer clients. Fertilizer dealers also continue to use soil testing as a planning and marketing tool and as a management support service for their customers. Likewise, the environment benefits from improved management of soil resources and fertilizer materials made possible by soil testing.
It's an exciting time in agriculture, while the industry is seeing the highest average yields on record due to the advancements that growers are utilizing. These successes call for a celebration, but it's also important for growers to remember that with record yield comes record nutrient removal, which requires replenishing those nutrients for the next growing season.