Growing Knowledge

Read the latest insights from our experts as they cover agronomy issues that matter most to you and your operation.

Joel and Jon
Hosts, WinField United
On this episode of the Deal With Yield, hosts Joel Wipperfurth and Jon Zuk discuss the various challenges impacting this year’s harvest, including compaction, common disease pressures like SDS and nutrient deficiency trends in corn. The guys look to answer the question, “Is there a connection between disease and fertility?”

The Deal With Yield is a podcast series covering the issues that matter most in crop production.

Plan Now for Better Nutrient Management

Kyle Gustafson
Agronomist, WinField United
If you’ve made tissue sampling a priority this season, you probably have a pretty good understanding of how your nutrient management program fared. You can use what you learned this season to develop a solid nutrient management strategy for next year. Proactive planning can help alleviate pressure when in-season challenges limit nutrient availability. Here are some tips to get started.
 
Identify nutrient uptake issues. Comparing nutrient levels in plant tissue with the nutrient levels in soil is a great way to understand how effective plant nutrient uptake is. In South Dakota, soils may test adequate for zinc, but tissue sampling will frequently reveal the micronutrient is deficient in the crop. This suggests the need for multiple forms of zinc that are delivered in a plant-available form. Knowing this, we can experiment with different fertilizer rates or formulations to help improve plant uptake.
 
Capitalize on top-end yield. With tissue sampling data, we can critically evaluate how to improve nutrient application, rate and formulation to increase uptake. For example, if tissue samples consistently show a nitrogen deficiency in V6 corn, your crops may benefit from a split nitrogen application. Adjusting nitrogen application timing could be just what your hybrids need to reach their high-end yield potential.
 
Identify management zones. Using technology such as the R7® Tool, you’re better able to identify areas with varying productivity potential and manage those areas independently. You can take tissue and soil samples from different areas to gain a better understanding for why each zone has high or low yield potential. From there, your agronomist can assist in developing site-specific fertilizer recommendations to address each zone’s nutrient issues.
 
Build a better plan. Many nutrients, such as phosphorus and potassium, have a limited ability to be corrected in-season once deficiencies occur. Using historical data, we can proactively build better nutrient management plans to limit the risk of deficiencies in-season.
 
Tissue sampling is a great way to boost your operation’s productivity and save on input costs. While this season is still fresh in your mind, take advantage of the opportunity to revisit your 2018 tissue sampling results to begin building a solid nutrient management foundation for 2019. You’ll likely find ways to increase productivity and potentially cut input costs by using a critical eye to analyze data. 
 
To learn more about how to use tissue sampling to build a better nutrient management plan, contact your local WinField United retailer.

4 Ways to Leverage Tissue Sampling Insights in the Off-Season

Corey Evans
Technical Seed Manager
The majority of farmers who choose to take tissue samples are looking for in-season insights to help them fine-tune their fertilization programs. But tissue nutrient analysis can also tell you a lot about your production practices and identify changes that can be made to improve productivity. Here are four ways you can use tissue sampling results in the off-season to make changes to your management practices.

1. Soil and tissue analysis comparison can reveal potential problems. When used together, soil and tissue testing can help you identify potential issues in your field. For example, if soil analysis reveals you have ample nutrients present but tissue testing shows that they aren’t being taken up by the plant, that’s an indication that there may be issues with root growth caused by compaction, environmental conditions or shallow planting.

2. Tissue sampling helps calibrate the Field Forecasting Tool. The R7® Field Forecasting Tool (FFT) delivers more accurate results as new information is added to the model. The tissue sampling results from the NutriSolutions® app can be automatically fed into the FFT and can help estimate yield potential in-season. The model can also be used in the off-season to help establish management practices for the future that can reduce the gap between the forecasted yield and the actual yield.

3. Evaluating nitrogen trends can help with seed selection. If you find your plant nitrogen levels are often trending low, you might choose to be more aggressive with your nitrogen applications. But if you’re looking to maintain input costs, an alternative would be to place a hybrid that has a low response-to-nitrogen score on those acres in the future, knowing that nitrogen could be limiting.

In 2017, we tested 210 hybrids at our Answer Plot® locations and found 36 percent were highly responsive to nitrogen, 45 percent were moderately responsive and 19 percent were less responsive to nitrogen. Across the tested hybrids, there was a 39.5- to 97.2-bushel-per-acre yield response gradient, illustrating the vast differences genetics can have on nitrogen utilization in plants.

4. Choose the right seed if zinc comes up short. If tissue sampling trends reveal an early-season zinc shortage, consider using CROPLAN® corn hybrids on your acres. All CROPLAN hybrids are treated with Advanced Coating® Zn seed treatment. By coating seeds with zinc, Advanced Coating Zn promotes quick emergence, even in cool, wet conditions, and it helps establish strong, healthy stands. In nearly 180 Answer Plot program test plots over three years, corn treated with Advanced Coating Zn seed treatment averaged an extra 2 bushels per acre.
Don’t put your tissue sampling results on the shelf once you’ve used them to make in-season decisions. Evaluating nutrient data in the off-season can help you develop a more comprehensive crop management plan that includes mapping out management zones and choosing the right hybrids and seed treatments based on what nutrient trends are showing. Work with your WinField United retailer to put your tissue sampling results to work in the off-season.
 
Advanced Coating®, Answer Plot®, CROPLAN®, NutriSolutions®, R7® and WinField® are trademarks of WinFIeld United.

Planning A Holistic Plant Nutrition Program

Joel and Jon
Hosts, WinField United
Joel Wipperfurth and Jon Zuk continue the plant nutrition conversation on this episode of The Deal With Yield. The two discuss mapping out a plant nutrition plan and the implications of delaying crop input decisions. Plus, the guys answer a question from the audience.
 
Season 12, Episode 5: Planning A Holistic Plant Nutrition Program

The Deal With Yield is a podcast series covering the issues that matter most in crop production.

Optimizing Cotton Production

Joel and Kyle
Hosts, WinField United
Agronomist and guest host Sara Smelser is back on a new episode of The Deal With Yield. Kyle and Sara discuss nutrient management and best in-season practices, plus Sara gives a history lesson on cotton production.
Season 11, Episode 2 – Optimizing Cotton Production

The Deal With Yield is a podcast series covering the issues that matter most in crop production.

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