With bumper crops driving commodity prices down this year, some growers may be tempted to cut back on their fall dry P & K fertilizer application. Find out why cutting back on fertility might not be a good decision, and what you can do this fall to ensure a good crop next season.
Stephen Sexton: Hi, I’m Stephen Sexton, with Agricen, and today I’m speaking with Greg Schmitz. He’s a marketing manager for Crop Production Services for the Western Iowa and Eastern Nebraska Division. His morning, we’re several miles north of Wall Lake, Iowa, birthplace of Andy Williams at Greg’s field plot. [To Greg] In the years that I’ve been working with you, I don’t know that I’ve ever seen this plot have so much yield potential.
Greg: It’s outstanding this year. After the last three years that we’ve had with such dry weather and drought conditions, it’s good to see us be able to have a beautiful crop and some huge yield potential, both in our corn and in our soybeans in this area.
Stephen: There may be a temptation for growers to cut back on their dry P & K fertilizer applications this fall. Does that make agronomical sense?
Greg: Cutting back, necessarily, is not the right direction to go. One thing we don’t want to do is we don’t want to limit our crops in ensuing years because of cutting back on fertility. We want to be sure that we’re correcting the pH and soil sampling so that we have the ability to help the customer raise as good a crop—year in and year out—as possible.
Stephen: What are some of the challenges growers are going to face this fall with their dry P & K applications?
Greg: So, adjusting pH is a big issue. Just making sure that we’re applying it [fertilizer] correctly. We’ve got a lot of people using variable rate technology, and we go out and apply that phosphorous to the field. We’ll have our agronomists go down and sit down on an individual basis with our customer and then come up with a prescription of fertility from a dry perspective that we can apply on that acre.
In our area right now, we’ve seen enough results with the Titan [PBA] that we believe that that customer’s going to get at least a 3-to-1 return on his invested dollar—at a minimum.
One of the things that we’ve been testing the last several years is integrating a product called Radiate. It actually stimulates root production in the plant. It tank mixes very well in with, like a starter fertilizer problem – there’s no compatibility issues. It’s a very efficient product and easy to use.
We’re basically looking at integrating three different technologies and helping enhance our customers’ ability to raise a really good corn crop.
Stephen: Greg, thank you for your time today. To learn more about dry fertilizer applications, please join us this September for one of our webinars at agricen.com/webinars. We’ll look at the facts and answer your questions. My name is Stephen Sexton with Agricen. Thank you.