Minnesota Farmer


Water, water, go away
June 30, 2010, 6:44 am
Filed under: Corn, Farm, fertilizer, Minnesota, nitrogen, rain, Soybeans, weather | Tags: , , , , ,

The effects of last weeks storms still linger.  Low areas of fields have standing water in them days after the last storm, in some cases a lot of water.  Rivers and creeks are over their banks and are reluctant to go down.  Soybean and corn plants can take only so much water and then they need to get their feet dry.  We’ll see how much damage this creates.

We were caught with our last application of nitrogen still on the truck.  Nitrogen is required for a good harvest and the corn crop has grown too tall for normal application methods.  We have talked to the co-op and they will apply the nitrogen with a high-wheeled sprayer with drop nozzles.  The drops will get the nitrogen to the ground where the rain can wash it into the root zone.  It’s not the preferred method, but it works.

Why wait so long to put on the last of the fertilizer?  Because a late application of nitrogen gets the fertilizer to the plant when it needs it with less chance for nitrogen loss.  A late application also means we can use less fertilizer, thus saving money.  This is the first time I’ve been caught by rain so I could not apply the nitrogen myself.

Farming is a gamble.  You weigh the options, make a choice, and then you live with it.  Sometimes you get lucky, some times you don’t.

Michael

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