Category: Fertility

Ontario ag retailers make 4R stewardship a priority

Ontario ag retailers need to provide leadership in helping farmers adopt 4R nutrient stewardship and a new audit program can do just that, says AGRIS Co-operative agronomist Dale Cowan. In 2015, OMAFRA, the Ontario Agri Business Association, Fertilizer Canada, and ag retailer stakeholders signed a memorandum of understanding stating that 4R nutrient stewardship – right source,… Read more »

Use active math when evaluating nitrogen stabilizers

When growing corn, many farmers utilize nitrogen stabilizers to protect their fertilizer investment. Agrotain has become a popular stabilizer choice for its ability to inhibit nitrification and protect nitrogen from ammonia volatilization. There are also products that protect against losses from denitrification and nitrate leaching. AGRIS Co-operative agronomist Dale Cowan says farmers can see a yield… Read more »

Adjusting crop varieties to match field variability, not the field average

The resolution at which farm equipment can treat a field continues to shrink, automatically adjusting rates on-the-fly to account for variability in a field rather than treating an entire field the same. To use an inkjet printer analogy, today’s equipment is increasingly capable of “printing” pixels that are only metres or even centimetres in size rather than… Read more »

Wheat School: When does your crop need spring nitrogen?

It’s late March and it’s cool in Ontario. Are you thinking about applying nitrogen to your winter wheat crop? If so, don’t mention it to RealAgriculture resident agronomist Peter Johnson – he may have a conniption. After he stops shaking, WheatPete will tell you that there is no benefit to putting nitrogen on wheat until… Read more »

Salford goes onboard with planter-mounted fertilizer applicator

Salford is giving growers the ability to apply either in-row, pop-up, or banded granular starter fertilizer with the ease and maneuverability that comes with a planter-mounted fertilizer applicator. The company’s new Ferti-GO 4S features a single product hopper, available for mounting on many planter models, with variable rate metering and four-section control. “With this metering system, the Ferti-GO 4S… Read more »

Case IH Nutri-Placer aims for high speed, low disturbance

It’s fast and it’s efficient. That’s what growers need to know about the new Nutri-Placer 940 fertilizer applicator. Case IH says its latest fertilizer applicator featuring its high speed low disturbance (HSLD) row unit is capable of speeds up to 11 mph, allowing operators to cover over 900 acres in a 12-hour day. Case IH unveiled… Read more »

Neighbourhood nutrient plans share the load to better manage manure

Your farm has a nutrient management plan, but does it include your neighbours? A larger-scale plan is a great idea for intense livestock neighbourhoods that struggle to use manure efficiently. It also ensures nutrients stay in the field and out of tiles and waterways, says Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs field crop sustainability… Read more »

Corn School: Boost kernel size for more yield

If you’re targeting maximum corn yield, you need to fine-tune plant nutrition for a particular two-week period of the corn growing season, says Tony Vyn, professor of agronomy at Purdue University. That’s because while we’ve been focused on more rows and kernels per row per ear, modern hybrids can pack tonnes of yield in if… Read more »

Wheat School: What’s the best N rate for my goal yield and protein?

How confident are you in your selected nitrogen (N) rate for wheat? Do you adjust that number based on yield potential? Variety? Soil type? How much N is enough to reach maximum potential? You might be surprised to learn that existing nitrogen rate recommendations are based off of older research, with older varieties, and without… Read more »

Corn School: Using your drone to make better management decisions

Recent advances in the availability and quality of satellite imagery is providing powerful in-season management insights for corn growers. Many growers feel it’s no longer necessary to fly their own drone to capture aerial images of their fields. They can simply rely on a growing number of agronomic services to scout their crop using drone… Read more »

Soybean School: Learning from Ontario’s 2017 crop

It’s not official, but it looks like Ontario’s 2017 soybean yield will come in at around 43 bushels per acre. That’s down from the 46-bushel five-year average, but considering the challenges Mother Nature threw at the crop during the past growing year, OMAFRA soybean specialist Horst Bohner will take it. In this edition of RealAgriculture… Read more »

Canola School: Closing the hole in the phosphorus cycle

Phosphorus is a critical nutrient in farming, but it has also received a lot of negative attention for the impact it can have on water quality. If we consider the path of a single phosphorus molecule, it probably originates in a rock formation in the U.S. or North Africa. From there it becomes fertilizer and… Read more »

Wheat School: ‘Real’ Wheat Farmers — Shawn Schill

Not often do you hear of wheat outyielding corn, but that’s the case in our latest episode in the ‘Real’ Wheat Farmers series. RealAgriculture resident agronomist Peter Johnson can barely contain himself when Arthur, Ontario farmer Shawn Schill of Shawridge Farms tells him that one 200-acre field yielded 154 bu/ac of wheat, beating the average corn… Read more »

Keeping nitrogen available in the root zone

Nitrogen in the soil is available to plants in two forms: ammonium (NH4) and nitrate (N03). The problem with nitrate is, unlike ammonium, it’s a negatively-charged ion that’s not attracted to soil particles or soil organic matter. Nitrate is also water soluble, so it can easily move out of a crop’s rooting zone to places… Read more »

Corn School: ‘Wins’ of spring 2017

2017 may well be remembered for the spring that just kept on giving. From flooding to hail, Mother Nature threw just about every challenge imaginable at Ontario farmers during the early portion of the growing season. But despite difficult conditions that wreaked havoc on spring tillage, planting, weed control and nutrient application, farmers have persevered…. Read more »