Published on Monday, June 1, 2020
Digital technology is changing the face of agriculture, giving us more information at a faster pace and with greater precision than ever before. With advanced analytics and modeling, farmers use information to help them make more informed decisions. Increasing nitrogen use effi ciency (NUE) has been, and continues to be, a high priority for many stakeholders. For farmers, any gain we can make in NUE provides environmental benefi ts as well as increased return on investment (ROI).
Pre-plant nitrogen (N) applications may be less stressful and more effi cient in terms of balancing workload. Still, applying all of your N upfront is not the most efficient strategy when it comes to NUE and ROI. Since corn plants use 75% of N after the V10 growth stage, having more N in the field than can be used by the crop equals ineffi ciency. This fact is the foundation of the need for fast, accurate, and inexpensive technologies that can measure nitrogen in-season. These types of technologies will help bring us closer to meeting the 4Rs of nutrient stewardship: right source, right rate, right time, and right place.
Whether you are beginning your journey or you are already invested, here are a few options that can help you dial in your N rate and timing.
Pre-Sidedress Soil Nitrate Test (PSNT) or Late Spring Soil Nitrate Test (LSNT):
Crop Health Imagery (Greenseeker, Aerial Imagery):
Teralytic’s Wireless Soil Probe:
Beck’s is not advocating for one technology over another. However, we do suggest you try one of them. Like any technology, we can expect these to get more accurate, easier to use, and more affordable over time. Before we know it, they could be part of our daily farm operations.
Author: Greg Shepherd
Categories: CropTalk, 2020