Ontario’s cool, wet spring not only delayed planting, but also put the brakes on nitrogen mineralization, limiting the nutrient’s availability to the growing corn crop.
According to OMAFRA pre-sidedress nitrate testing (PSNT) survey results released this week, corn growers are looking at the lowest rates of available nitrogen since the survey began in 2013.
In this episode of Real Agriculture Corn School, OMAFRA corn lead Ben Rosser explains that the cooler-than-normal weather has slowed soil microbe activity and produced an average of 8.0 ppm of available nitrates in the 20 sites tracked for the survey. He notes that soil readings typically average 11 to 12 ppm.
Rosser explains how growers can consult OMAFRA’s corn nitrogen recommendations to determine sidedress rates required to reach target yields. He also offers tips on how to conduct PSNT testing to ensure accurate results and notes several factors, such as manure application, that growers need to be aware of when using the recommendation table.
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