The Secret behind Starter Fertilizers

Apr 09, 2021


As a producer, you want what’s best for your crops, and as planting season nears, you must start making nutritional decisions about those crops even before seeds hit the soil.

From the get-go, crops face difficult environmental challenges to overcome. Upon planting, corn and soybean plants only have just enough nutrition for emergence and very early top growth.

“A basic level of nutrition must be available right near the seed, as young root systems are not able to access a large volume of soil for quite some time,” Agtegra agronomy tech service manager Brad Ruden said.

Without a nutrient source readily available to these seedlings, a root system struggles to develop, which is further limited by cold, early-season soil temperatures.

“A healthy early season root system is the key foundation for everything that happens later in the season,” Ruden said.  “Rapid vegetative growth, skyrocketing daily nutrient demand and the all-important reproductive growth all depend on a healthy root system for the crop.”

So, how can you best equip those seedlings with optimal nutrition during these early season challenges?
Let’s start with starter fertilizers.

Starter fertilizers provide seedlings with adequate nutrition to overcome early season challenges. Common elements found in these fertilizers include nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, sulfur and zinc. Understanding how plants utilize each becomes critical to understanding the overall importance of their application. For example, synergistic nutrients phosphorus and zinc are both needed for healthy root development. Potassium and some micronutrients boost early plant growth, development and stress tolerance.

“Doing our part to reduce early season stress by providing a starter fertilizer, like our Agtegra premium starters A7-23 or 8-20-5 for a crop is a great setup program for excellent growth and development all season, and that leads to bin-busting yields at harvest,” Ruden said.

Have questions on how to get started? Contact your local Agtegra location today!
 

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