The availability of micronutrients in the soil during the First 30 Days can play a critical role in preserving a crop’s final yield potential. Get the growing season off to a strong start with a better distribution of micronutrients in the field and reap the benefits at harvest!
OMEX’s Perfuze is a highly-concentrated liquid suspension designed to coat your dry NPKS blends for an even distribution of micronutrients across the field. This product is a cost-effective, efficient choice to apply micronutrients to high pH soils, soils with high concentrations of organic matter, sandy soils and other conditions which can restrict the availability of nutrients. Various analyses are available to meet the specific needs of your field.
Earlier this season, we examined how hard water can impact your burn-off and in-season spraying. The impact of hard water doesn’t end there – it can also affect crop desiccation later in the season.
Hard water and high pH levels tend to go hand-in-hand; if water for tank-mixing desiccants is very hard chances are it also has a high pH level. These two factors will reduce the efficacy of the herbicide and this can result in slower drying times for your crops and a delayed harvest.
Grain filling is a crucial stage in a plant’s development, and the success of grain filling can play an important role in determining final grain yield. For successful grain filling, crops require a healthy balance of nutrients and good environmental conditions. But as we know, ideal conditions can sometimes be hard to come by. Overly wet or drought conditions at this time of year can both have significant impacts on the quality of a crop’s grain fill.
Both waterlogged and dry soil conditions can deprive plants of the nutrients they need at this critical time, which may cause deficiencies. If crops become nutrient deficient during the grain filling stage, the grain may not be able to develop to its full potential, and yields will be negatively impacted.
When wet or drought conditions persist during your crop’s grain filling period, a foliar fertilizer is usually recommended. A foliar can mitigate damage crops sustain from deficiencies in soil-supplied nutrients. By providing nutrients straight to the plant’s leaves, you can bypass the issue of waterlogged or too-dry soils tying up nutrients, and provide the crop with nutrition it can begin using immediately to help improve grain filling.
With the growing season in full bloom, I touched base with Manitoba producer Art Enns for an update on the canola field we’ve partnered with him on in support of the Manyinga Project.
Enns will donate the proceeds from 40 acres of canola toward the Manyinga Project, which supports two schools for orphaned and vulnerable children in the Manyinga region of Zambia, Africa. Along with the state curriculum, the children learn the agricultural skills they will need to support themselves, as subsistence farming is the primary way of life in the Manyinga region.
OMEX partnered on the project with a contribution of High Performance Plant Nutrition Products to help maximize yields and, ultimately, the proceeds from this field. 20 acres were treated with OMEX products, and 20 acres were left as our check. When I gave Enns a call, I was happy to hear how impressed he was with his crop’s growth so far.
Well-balanced nutrition plays a key role in crop growth and development. There are many micronutrients essential for plant growth including boron, calcium, copper, manganese and zinc. However, deficiencies, biotic and abiotic factors can inhibit a crop’s ability to take in the nutrients it needs.
To attain high yields, crops require a balanced ratio of macronutrients (NPK – nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium) and micronutrients (zinc, copper, manganese, iron, boron, etc.) The correct amount of some nutrients and the limited supply of others can create imbalances and reduce yield potential.
However, the higher the yield a crop produces, the more nutrients it takes out of the soil. Today’s high-yielding crops remove more nutrients from the soil than ever, leading to issues of nutrient availability.
Weather also plays a part, with most micronutrients virtually unavailable in the cool/cold temperatures and wet soil conditions which are typical of spring across Western Canada. Using a liquid starter fertilizer at seeding time can help correct micronutrient deficiency in the soil, preventing common early-season deficiencies in crops and improving yields.
When it comes to using micronutrients, you have some options. Choosing the best form of micronutrients for your application will help you make the most of their benefits. I recommend chelated micronutrients, which contain ethylene diamine tetra acetate (EDTA).
EDTA protects zinc, manganese, calcium, copper and iron from ‘tie-up’ in the soil and to phosphorus. This helps make the micronutrients more available to plants and ensures a better efficiency while preventing deficiencies. The EDTA family of micronutrients are synthetic, and are also the strongest chelating agents. Far stronger than organics, they are used at a ratio of 10:1.
Chelated micronutrients have several benefits that will earn them a place in your field. Their high quality, versatility, ease of handling and compatibility for use with a wide variety of crops make them a smart investment in any planting season.
Chelated micronutrients are high quality with low levels of impurities. They resist soil fixation and are highly stable. That stability means the micronutrients will remain available for longer in the growing season, giving your crop more time to access them.
Micronutrients can be tank mixed with liquid fertilizers and pesticides to increase efficacy and reduce chemical reactions between nutrients and other components in the tank. Typically, both root and foliar uptake is strong. After spraying with chelated micronutrients, crops can take them up quite quickly.
Micronutrients are compatible with 100 per cent orthophosphate grades, and are compatible with most herbicides, fungicides and insecticides. Using micronutrients in an irrigation system can provide a quick treatment for nutrient deficiencies.
In addition to being highly compatible with other products, micronutrients are safe and easy to work with. They’re pH-neutralized, won’t damage your equipment and can be stored even at low temperatures. It’s a win-win-win. Chelated micronutrients can be used on wheat, barley, oats, canola, corn, soybeans, dry beans, alfalfa, potatoes and peas – just about any crop you can grow in Western Canada.
Once you’ve determined which micronutrients are right for your crop, all that’s left to calculate is how much to use and when. The answer to those questions depends on a combination of factors, including the results of your soil test, the soil structure and its holding capacity, the type of crop and your yield targets.
Applying micronutrients as a preventative measure can help you avoid yield delays and deficiencies. Speak with an OMEX Plant Health Professional today about including the micronutrients found in OMEX Primers, Starters and Foliars in your Nutrient Management Plan.
Hot conditions in the prairies often coincide with crops gearing up for flowering. During this reproductive stage, the crop has an increasing demand for boron. Unfortunately, boron is immobile in the plant and cannot be stripped from vegetative tissues to fulfill the transient peak of demand of the flowers.
Boron is a key nutrient to successful pollination. When the conditions become hot and dry or hot with a high level of relative humidity, boron translocation becomes jeopardized. This can lead to a poor extension of the pollen tubes resulting in misses in the pods. We often hear about ‘heat blast’ or ‘pod abortion’, which a direct consequence of boron shortage at flowering time. Heat also shortens the flowering period and affect the activity of the pollinators
We at OMEX believe in supporting agriculture education and the dedicated people around the world who help deliver it. In this spirit, we are proud to be a partner of the Manyinga Project, supporting Manitoba producer Art Enns in his effort to grow 40 acres of canola, the revenue from which he will donate to the project.
The Manyinga Project operates two schools for orphaned and vulnerable children in the Manyinga region of Zambia, Africa. Along with the state curriculum, the two schools teach the children to grow field crops, fruits, vegetables and to raise goats – all crucial life skills they will need to support themselves, since subsistence farming is the primary way of life in the Manyinga region.
You can follow every recommendation and do everything by the book, but there’s one factor no one can control – and that’s the forces of nature. Hail is one such environmental factor that can cause significant physical damage to your crop.
Leaf tissue that’s been damaged by hail can’t take in sunlight to effectively complete photosynthesis, and energy production in the crop will stall, impeding growth. Physical damage also leaves plants more vulnerable to diseases and insects. Depending on the severity, a hail storm can significantly stunt plant growth and set back yields.