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Most nitrogen loss—upwards of 70 percent—occurs below ground. Leaching and denitrification are the primary culprits, usually due to excessive rain, which is common in the spring in the Midwest. When this loss is combined with warming soil temperatures in early spring, crops just have a 30 percent chance of achieving targeted yield goals. Can the odds be improved to overcome nitrogen loss?
The answer is yes. In many regions of the Corn Belt, early spring is an ideal time to apply nitrogen, despite the high risk of loss. As a solution, N-Serve® nitrogen stabilizer, powered by Optinyte™ technology, is a great option for farmers looking to maximize their spring anhydrous ammonia applications. Although previously viewed for only fall use, adding N-Serve to early season applications helps make unpredictable spring weather less threatening. More than 40 years of field and university trials show an economic return from stabilizing spring-applied ammonium nitrogen, especially given that the 60 days following spring application make up the highest rainfall period of the season in most regions of the Corn Belt.
Spring into action to maximize nitrogen and yield
Depending on soil type, ammonium nitrogen converts to nitrate nitrogen one to four weeks after application. Temperature is also a factor. When temperatures are between 40 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit, nitrification can take up to 14 weeks. As soil temps increase due to warm spring weather—70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit—the conversion process is accelerated.
Using N-Serve nitrogen stabilizer with anhydrous ammonia fertilizer applications increases nitrogen retention by impeding the nitrification process. There are several additional advantages
to using N-Serve, including:
• Nitrogen protection below ground, with leaching decreased by 16 percent and a 28 percent increase in soil nitrogen retention.
• An average yield increase of 5.2 percent on spring applications.
• Nitrogen availability extended six to eight weeks, during critical growth points in a corn plant’s development.
It’s good for farmers, good for the environment
Nitrogen lost to leaching and denitrification not only compromises yield, but also the quality of water, soil and the environment. When less nitrogen is allowed to convert to nitrate, it is less likely nitrates will leach into groundwater.
Optinyte™ technology is the only product of its kind to be awarded the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award. Farmers can feel good about using N-Serve for its ability to increase nitrogen effectiveness and their bottom line, as well as its proven ability to protect the environment.
With N-Serve nitrogen stabilizer, applications can withstand excessive early season moisture, extend nitrogen availability in the soil and help crops achieve a maximum yield.
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