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Showing posts from September, 2017

Here's What the Latest Research Says about Micronutrients

Daniel Kaiser, Extension Soil Fertility Specialist

Micronutrients are elements essential to plant growth and development, but in smaller amounts than the big nutrient players like N, P and K. Where the big guys get taken up in pounds per acre by the plant, we measure micronutrient uptake in ounces per acre. Though they may seem inconsequential in the grand scheme of things, micronutrients can significantly affect yield if they’re deficient in the plant. Researchers have identified boron, chlorine, cobalt, copper, iron, manganese, molybdenum, nickel and zinc as micronutrients required for plant growth.

The 50 Degree Rule, Inhibitors and MAP and DAP

On this episode of the Nutrient Management Podcast, Dan Kaiser, Fabian Fernandez and Jeff Vetsch talk all about fall fertilizer. Find out when to apply, what source to use and if you should use an inhibitor. Also, how should you be thinking about nitrogen credits with MAP or DAP fertilizers? Plus, thoughts on Minnesota's proposed nitrogen rule.

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How to Estimate Nitrogen Loss from Leaching

Brad Carlson, Extension Educator

The nitrogen cycle dictates the form and movement of nitrogen in the soil and in plants. Given adequate time and temperature, nitrogen in the soil will convert to the nitrate form, which is susceptible to loss in two pathways: denitrification, which happens in saturated soils that lack oxygen, and leaching, which happens when water moves through the soil, taking nitrate with it.

Think of the soil and the different forms of nitrogen as the charged ends of a magnet. The nitrate form of nitrogen is negatively charged, so it is not attracted to the negatively charged clay particles in the soil. This means it does not adsorb to clay particles, leaving it “loose” in the soil and subject to move with water. Though we can’t determine the exact extent of nitrate movement through leaching, we can estimate it.

Herbicides alone cannot adequately manage herbicide-resistant weeds -- Thoughts regarding planning for next year's soybean crop

Jeff Gunsolus, Lisa Behnken and Fritz Breitenbach
As we enter the fall harvest, many will be evaluating what soybean variety to select for next year. No longer is the focus solely on yield and tolerances to disease, iron chlorosis, and nematodes. This fall, farmers, consultants and advisors will be asking questions regarding how label modifications, if any, to the newly introduced dicamba formulations of Xtendimax, FeXapan, and Engenia might affect their variety selection decisions. The conundrum is that discussions at EPA and State Departments of Agriculture assessing the impact of this year’s off-target events on next year’s label will likely extend well into the fall. As you strategize future weed management plans, we would like for all of us to rethink the dicamba issue. Think about what brought on this issue in the first place: weed resistance to multiple groups of herbicides.

Sept. 7 Sauk Centre Hay Auction Summary

by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties, Crops Focus, 320-968-5077,

Click on Links to my summaries from the Sept 7, 2017 Sauk Centre Hay Auction

1. Sept 7, 2017 Summary - All tested loads sold, groups based on hay and bale type and quality.

2. History of Selected Lots NOW INCLUDES AVERAGES FOR SEPT 2016 through MAY 2017, along with previous years.

3. Graph of Selected Alfalfa hay groups.

The 2016-17 season is the RED line.

I’m marking Summer and September with a VERTICAL LINE indicating high, low, average.

SMALLER LOAD NUMBERS MAY NOT REPRESENT THE MARKET AS WELL. Compare to other market information. Remember your livestock and crop budgets are the key to what you pay or accept for hay.


Everything You Need to Know Before Applying N This Fall

Fabián G. Fernández, Extension nutrient management specialist

It’s that time of year again. Fall is upon us and harvest is just around the corner. There are big decisions to make when it comes to fall nitrogen. Should you apply? If so, when? What form of N should I apply? Should I use an inhibitor? We’ve rounded up our most frequently asked questions about fall applications and the answers are all right here.

Your Guide to Foliar Nutrient Applications -- With Video!

Dan Kaiser, Extension Soil Scientist

When crops are actively growing in the mid- to late part of the season, they demand greater quantities of nutrients on a daily basis. Immobile nutrients applied to the soil surface can face difficulty getting down to the roots where they’ll be taken up. When looking at in-season corrective measures, foliar fertilization has been growing as the go-to option for growers to supply those nutrients.

While foliar applications are a helpful management tool for in-season applications, there is a risk for crop damage if applied incorrectly. Here’s a look at the how-tos and limitations of foliar fertilization.

Rotation and nitrogen management are keys to optimizing corn production following alfalfa

Jeff Coulter, Extension corn specialist
Corn grown after alfalfa usually has increased yield, reduced nitrogen requirement from fertilizer or manure, and reduced pest pressure compared to when following other crops. The extent and consistency of these benefits in first- and second-year corn are influenced by the effectiveness of alfalfa termination and nitrogen management.

June July Aug Hay Auction Summaries, Sauk Centre

by Dan Martens, Extension Educator, Stearns-Benton-Morrison Counties, 320-968-5077,

Links are noted for Information Listed:

1. June 1 Hay Auction Summary - All tested loads sold, groups based on hay and bale type and quality.

2. July 6 Hay Auction Summary - Some lots in a group have the same test results. It might be that 2 or 3 loads came from the same field and one test was taken for them.

3. Aug 3 Hay Auction Summary

4. History of Selected Lots - INCLUDES AVERAGES FOR SEPT 2016 through MAY 2017, along with some previous years.

5. Graph of Selected Alfalfa hay groups.

The 2016-17 season is the RED line now.
I marked the June, July, August markets with a VERTICAL LINE indicating high, low, average.
SMALLER LOAD NUMBERS MAY NOT REPRESENT THE MARKET AS WELL. Read more for other market sources, a Corn Silage Note, Note on an Extension Beef Tour in Morrison County Sept 6, and a Strip Till Expo Sept 6 near Fergus Falls.