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AGRONOMIST: PLANT NOW, FERTILIZE LATER
BrownfieldAgNews reports:

When the rain shuts off - an agronomy specialist advises growers to PLANT - then, add nitrogen later. Peter Scharf, with the University of Missouri, says delaying planting is more likely to hurt yields than delaying nitrogen application. In fact, he says, during wet years delayed nitrogen application "will actually help yields."

There are several ways to apply nitrogen after planting but he's especially excited about the use of a spinner spreader.

"A spinner spreader with dry product because you can cover so many acres that way and I really like doing it that way," Scharf tells Brownfield Ag News, "There's a lot of new machines being purchased around the Midwest, in Missouri. I've heard that there are some being leased in Missouri, too, in response to this weather that we've had."

Scharf says to be watchful for the quality of the dry material. He says, "Nearly all the spinner spreaders are really good machines but if you put material in it that's 30% dust, that's 30% that you can't spread evenly. You can't throw dust with a spinner spreader."

After checking deep soil samples from several states this spring - Missouri, Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma and Minnesota - Scharf says they have found less nitrogen than expected. Because of last year's drought, much of the nitrogen fertilizer applied to corn was not used.


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