Nitrogen and phosphorus are like the Prom King and Queen of fertilizer. They get the most attention and are the first to be talked about. When micronutrients finally make their grand entrance into the fertilizer discussion, there always seems to be a long list of objections and excuses on why they shouldn’t be included. Why is there such a resistance to using micronutrients in Western Canada? Let's take a look at some of the objections we often hear about.
“I don’t think my crops need micronutrients”
It is widely known that all crops require all essential nutrients for proper growth and development. Essential nutrients include micronutrients. However, it has become the norm to think that cereals only require copper and canola only requires boron, but this is not true. We tend to notice copper deficiencies in wheat more than boron deficiencies due to the effect that it has on the flag leaf. It is not as noticeable when the heads don’t flower completely due to a boron deficiency unless we are looking for it.
“I’ve used micronutrients before and they didn’t work”
The form and how the nutrient is applied are critical factors influencing whether it will be effective enough to produce a visual difference. Generally, micronutrients are applied in a granular form at seeding and even distribution is challenging, if not impossible. In order for a plant to respond to an application of micronutrients, it needs to have access to it. In the past, traditional granular sources of micronutrients had to be used at pounds per acre to get any crop response. New coating technology has allowed micronutrients to be targeted in grams per acre, therefore, utilizing the Right Rate, Right Source and Right Place of the 4R's Nutrient Stewardship.
“I don't want to add more cost”
Micronutrients are essential nutrients which means a crop cannot grow and develop properly without them. By supplying micronutrients in a useable form, evenly across the field, the crop will have a higher yield potential and also increase its ability to use all of the essential nutrients effectively.
The trial below shows a 9:1 ROI where we compared YaraVita Procote B to granular boron in a B deficient field.
If you haven't added micronutrients to your fertilizer program yet, ask your local retailer about YaraVita PROCOTE Micronutrient Coatings. Coat your dry fertilizer now and feel confident storing it until 2023 seeding begins.