Although it’s tempting for growers to put out all of their nitrogen early in the season when it’s easier to apply, splitting the application into a pre-plant and a sidedress application can be an effective way to ensure that the corn crop has enough nitrogen to meet its needs at peak demand. This can be especially beneficial in wet years where leaching of pre-plant nitrogen is likely to have occurred.
Peak nitrogen demand for corn is right before tassel and continues through grain fill, a period that corresponds with the V8 through VT/R1 corn growth stages. Generally, 1 to 1.1 lbs of nitrogen per bushel of corn is a good way to estimate total crop need for the season. However, the applied nitrogen still has to be taken up by the plant to deliver yield. Sidedressing with supplemental nitrogen by V6 (right before the crop’s nitrogen needs are greatest) allows growers to better manage this critical input.
Growers can use Accomplish LM or Extract PBA as a supplemental technology with their sidedress application to increase nutrient availability and facilitate uptake. This technology can be used alone or combined with a nitrogen stabilizer to help protect the applied nitrogen from denitrification and leaching.
Learn more about using biocatalyst technology to enhance a sidedress nitrogen application by downloading the Sidedressing Nitrogen for Maximum Yields booklet.